Why am I so mesmerized? Is it because it’s so simple, so elegant? That can’t be it; it’s too ordinary. But why do I deem this to be…beautiful? Beauty shouldn’t be ordinary and simple and elegant; beauty shouldn’t be this much of a paradox and yet, I can’t help but stare back. Could it be that I’m simply labelling the experience as beautiful, when in actuality, when innately it is not? No, that can’t be it; that’d be terrible to realize that what is beautiful is only what we call to be just that: beautiful. Beauty shouldn’t have to be realized as beautiful, it should…just be; beauty should just be, it should just be beautiful. That must be the primary quality, a major characteristic of beauty, that beauty just is, it is pure, coming into life without, seemingly, any apparent reason, without having to do anything for anyone or anything – that is what beauty is…But then how would we be able to identify it? How would we be able to distinguish between what is beautiful and what is not beautiful? As soon as we describe the scene as beautiful the scene ceases to be beautiful. So what is it? Why am I so fixed? Of course, I’ve never witnessed such a spectacle before. But if this experience is beautiful only because I hadn’t previously witnessed the experience then that would mean every new experience is going to be beautiful simply because I had never witnessed it, which is obviously false, seeing as that not all of my past first encounters were beautiful experiences. I hated my last job; I didn’t see the point relentlessly hustling, rummaging around ‘cause no one knew how to give instructions, working for soulless executives, a business that cared more for profits than it did its employees. Don’t businesses realize that if they treat their employees with respect their employees would be more inclined to solve the problems that need fixing and by doing so, increase their potential for gains? Clearly respect, as an option, doesn’t compute with some people. That’s a shame. People could be doing so much more, yet they don’t. Why is that? The answer is definitely relative, but still, there must be some commonality, some theme for why people don’t live up to their potential. I guess, it’s because it’s difficult, that some people just simply find it tough to do so. It then must become about a choice between following a dream or cruising through life. On the one hand, you’re following a dream; on the other hand, you’re living a stress-free life, whatever that means. How can a person live without stress? I don’t know if that’s even possible. Stress, anxiety, must be the worst part about being a human being. Anxiety is supposed to protect us, spurring on a fight or flight response when we’re in danger, but I bet anxiety didn’t predict it’d give us the gift of paranoia. You’d think, if anything, the product of anxiety would be a reason to be more empathetic towards each other, but most of the time it just feels as if we’re only producing more anxiety. No one would risk being empathetic; we don’t live in that world. No one would take the risk to be vulnerable, no one would dare open themselves up to another person because they open themselves up to potentially being hurt. We need more risk-takers…I need to take more risks…If we’re going to be in this constant state of anxiety that comes with life, we should have no excuse, but to follow our dreams. But maybe that’s it. Maybe that’s the problem; that we misinterpret what it means to follow a dream, that we don’t understand potential, that we don’t understand that we can never live up to our potential; that’s the mistake. If we were living as our potential, so to speak, then how we are living wouldn’t be our potential but would be how we’re living and our potential would be greater than how we’re living because that is what potential is; potential cannot be lived, it is something that we’ve got, not as in some form of ownership, but something that is with us. Potential can never be reached. Goals can be met, but potential can never be reached. And so, I guess the idea should be to aspire to that potential, always trying to grow and improve one’s self, even though one will never get there…How sad. How sad, to realize that we can never be our potential; that the most we can be is the outcome of trying to reach our potential. And if we can never live up to our potential, why even bother? I guess, I’ve solved that riddle. But only if we can do something for ourselves so that we’re not victims to ourselves, only if we could stop seeing each other as consumers, as obstacles and start seeing each other as human beings, only if we could—
…For once, I felt the silence…an ecstasy…a fire in the soul, seeing the world through God’s eyes; I am God now; I am infinite…at least in that instant. For a second I felt reality converge to a single focus: those eyes, those blue eyes, staring back at me. I should look away; but how can I? I want to be God again, merging myself with everything else, becoming one with it all. That is the trick, that is the objective: to be one. It’s so clear and so obvious; but how do we do that? We’re not beauty; none of us are pure. We can’t fix the situation to become one, we must – that’s what beauty is: it’s a surprise. It must be. It must be when…when we experience a surprise that elevates us, transcending our own, perceived reality, suspending belief, making us feel alive, while at the same time making us feel beyond that, even for a split second…But it can’t be fixed. We cannot plan for beauty to surprise us; we’ve already ruined the surprise. It must happen…while we wait in melancholy. No wonder love makes us sad. But then, sadness makes us love; the two are married; love and sadness have to be interdependent, co-dependent, existing in a constant relationship with each other, with us living through the tug of war, enduring the pain, the tragedy, longing for love, creating Gods and Goddesses in each other’s eyes, for others and for ourselves, forming that state of oneness; what madness…! We really can’t live without anxiety; no life is perfect…Her life isn’t perfect. But I don’t care, I don’t mind fabricating an illusion, constructing, creating a fiction, even if it is an escape, a getaway, no matter how small the getaway is; how else can we live? I would die without being deceived. We all would. We need our lies as much as we need our truths. We need to wonder why the other person watches us when we’re not looking, why the person flinches when we look back, why they flick their hair, why they flex their right foot towards us, why they bite their lip or caress their cheek with their left pinkie; we need to be curious, we need – Wait…! I’m caressing my cheek. I’m flexing my right foot; I was biting my lip; we’re dancing. We’re in motion, our nerves, our gestures oscillating. It must mean something, this rhythm, this tango, this…flow between souls. Or am I just being romantic…? Does it matter? I don’t know…Why should it matter? Why should it have meaning? I’m being foolish; listen to yourself. There are wars being fought, acts of terror, people dying for the most senseless of reasons, being tortured, sold, shipped off as if they, these human beings, were food, slabs of meat for someone’s amusement, with our environment, our home, deteriorating, raging against our incompetence, whilst selfishly arguing over policies that have no real benefit for us, and you’re biggest existential dilemma is finding the answer to why this person, this human being, is caressing their cheek with their left pinkie right below their eye, their blue eye, over their few small freckles; how can you be so small…? Besides, the feeling is impermanent, seeing that which we should be grateful for less and less. How can we be Gods when the experience is already a memory? Love is entropy…But is that such a bad thing? What’s the truth behind our melting passions? I’m not sure. It must be a personal answer, much like every other answer…Since our feelings are going to decay as our light dies, as our dream dies, we should live; live as if our hearts may burst out of our prisons, embracing obsessively, in the wildest of frenzies, breathing in each experience with such an excitement that our fire must roar, on the brink of tears – that is how we should life. That’s how I’m going to live. I’ll be my madness. I’ll live for the moment.
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And finally, thank you so much for taking the time to read my short story. I feel so grateful to get to do what I do and it’s thanks to you for taking an interest in the content I create. So again, thank you.