Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Poems © by Irina Serban

The clay beneath my feet, the horizon in front of me, the landscapes surrounding me, the sky above me are pages in a book written with quills bleeding earth, air, wood, and fiery colours. The words of this book are laid down differently every day by an unseen hand.

Perhaps, we perceive them as different in accordance with the mood of our Souls, who linger lazily behind heavy or wide-open eyelids. They rest their wise foreheads on the coloured windowsills: some are brown, some black, some green or blue, and all the other shades in between. Irrespective of the eyes’ colour, the Soul sees the world in the shades and hues he chooses to.

I'm going to tell you a secret: the Soul himself is a huge, broken stained glass. Something is always missing, and he knows it, but he can't tell what it is that's missing. Something always seems more shimmering and colourful than what he has already contemplated. So, he sits by his windowsill waiting, searching, leafing through the pages he is painting, day after day, with thoughts that come out in happiness or fury, in hope or dismay, in amazement or indifference, in peace or restlessness.

One day, miraculously, he finds a missing, colourful piece—as colourful as he—that was always there, but which, elusively, got away from its scrutinizing contemplation. It is then that the Soul emerges from his hidden abode, opening the door and pouring himself outside, leaving trails of golden ink on the pages he himself has imagined for so long. And suddenly, it strikes him that what he was looking for remained hidden not because he was not paying attention, but because he, mistakenly, wrote that piece into being with invisible ink, which can be revealed only by heat. And he didn’t know what heat meant and felt like.

He realizes that he had to learn a lesson to make everything visible. The heat needed was love! Not the grandiose kind of love that is so easily uttered and proclaimed by so many. But that tender, shy kind of love, that love, which flies with the softness of a butterfly, that love, which touches with the gentleness of an angel caress, that love, which exists because the whole universe would fall if it weren't. That love! Imperfect, demanding of your Soul more of another’s one. That love! And that love is in there, out there, above, below, everywhere. Let's only pay attention with what kind of ink we're writing! And if it happens to choose the invisible one, we should also learn to live with the heat. If we choose the normal, visible one, we should learn to forge it, smooth it and colour it through heat. Then, the land beneath our feet, the horizon in front of us, the landscapes surrounding us, the sky above us will become poems in the book of our life.

© Copyright 2014 Irina Serban. All rights reserved 

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Random Thoughts On Random Facts © by Irina Serban

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

There's Nothing In The Darkness © by Irina Serban

Illustration: Beauty and the Wild by Grivetart

I can't recall being particularly afraid of the dark when a child, still, I wasn't completely comfortable with it especially when imagination created strange shapes out of objects or shadows. And, I think, you all remember how, suddenly, the covers shifted into an unbreachable fortress keeping us safe from the monsters lurking under the bed.

Under those covers, I did my best at controlling my fear. I stared at those shapes until I figured out how they were formed, and what formed them. Then, what seemed to be the face of the bad witch ready to eat children alive, became the sinuous branch of the tree in front of my window. I noticed the little leaves moving in the wind, which up until then I imagined being her hair. I heard the wind playing through the branches, and the rustling ceased being the sound of the witch's long skirt, inducing me to sleep instead.

Growing up, I also grew to love the dark hours of the night with all the rustling, wind hissing, awkward shapes, and deep human silence. Yet, I found out about the existence of another frightening darkness: the one to which we all fall prisoners at one time or another: that pit filled with regrets, despair, second thoughts, disappointment, resignation, broken hearts and dreams, disillusionment. What cover can protect us from that ugliness of thought and emotion?

For me the same strategy as in childhood works: I don't pretend it's not there, I don't close my eyes thinking it will disappear, I don't run away in the arms of some safe harbour. Instead, I stare at its ugly face and let it dismantle my soul piece by piece until I get accustomed to its presence, to its strategy, to the pain inflicted. I get immune, and once I do that, I realize that the dark pit I'm in is not so scary, so endless, so resourceless as it tries to make me believe.

Darkness is afraid of us, too, and out of that fear, it creates monsters to keep us away from seeing the stair in the middle of it. That stair will help us climb up again.

Childhood taught me the best lesson: there's nothing in the darkness except for what we put in it because the shapes we see cannot be formed without light, as feeble as it may be. There's always light where there's shadow. Here it is! That's your stair!

© Copyright 2014 Irina Serban. All rights reserved

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