Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Suspended Worlds © by Irina Serban

You know, I've heard of such a suspended world existing somewhere in this universe. On every little island there were little people leading their lives unaware at the existence of others like them. What they saw at a distance were cold planets, as they called them, and the flickering lights at the windows were mistaken with stars, and the threads that linked the worlds between them were mistaken with rays of light. They did their daily chores with stoicism. They took care of their houses and gardens, they beautified their surroundings, but strangely enough, they didn't smile, and what’s worse, they didn't dream by day or by night. Perhaps, they forgot, or never knew how to do it. Everywhere one could hear "if only we were not alone", "if only we had somewhere to travel", "if only ..."

One day, one such lonely creature fed up of the routine of his life, fed up of the gloomy faces who forgot to smile and to look up at the sky, stopped at the rim of his world and looked intensely at the thin thread, which end got lost into the mist ahead. And he said: "Why not?".

As he took the first step on the thin filament, he felt a short pain in the muscles of his face, and an euphoric feeling in his heart. He started smiling! He touched his face with his hands following the lines created by the smile and continued walking. With every step that he took, the mist ahead dissipated a little bit more until a new world appeared out of nowhere, slightly different than his at shape but not so different at character. When he laid foot on the land of that world, all its inhabitants assaulted him with questions as to how he got there and where from. Finding out that there were other worlds out in the mist and that those lights they saw every night were in fact the lit windows of the inhabitants' houses, they all started smiling. They travelled everywhere bringing a gift of smile on every suspended world. Whenever they embarked on their journeys, they felt fear: at first of the unseen, then, of the thin filament that could have snapped in a second and cause their falling into the precipice, and in the end, of what the other people they visited might have said or done.

Now, those worlds know of the existence of all the others, and their little people, by looking around, ahead, and up, also grew taller and happier.

We live on a suspended world in the vast, dark universe. Within that world, we create our own suspended ones many times during our lives: worlds suspended by unsaid words, by undone promises, by non performed acts, by unrequited feelings, or refrained ones. They float all around us held up by thin filaments of regrets and fear. And we keep repeating, "if only", "if only" without realizing that we are the ones who keep them tied up in clusters above our heads, around our bodies, obstructing our view and hindering our movements.

Yes, if only! So many times I said these words myself: if only I listened, if only I acted, if only I didn't react, if only my choices were different. With every thought, I built a new suspended world. So suffocating! Such a weird choice for one who thirsts for freedom!

Why should we think "if only", cluttering our lives with so much negativity and bad feelings, which in their turn trigger fear and inertia?

I think we always make the best choice, under any circumstance. That's the best we can do at that precise moment. The fact that we think of many other possible choices that we might have taken is a mere consequence of the actual decision we have already made. That first choice gives us the wisdom to see other paths afterwards. Those roads were not there before! They've just appeared out of nowhere to pave the way for a better self. The only thoughts that should haunt us are "why not making a choice and move forward", just like that little creature who dared take the first step on a thin filament that led into the mist.

© Copyright 2013 Irina Serban. All rights reserved  


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