Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blabbing about a balloon...and life

How do you take in the world with realistic eyes, but holding onto that child-like awe that keeps the mind and heart amazed by simple sights?

For instance, releasing a balloon and watching it fly up...up...UP into the clouds, its color becoming more and more intense in the sun's spotlight. As a child, you stare with squinted lids until the balloon has finally gone out of sight. At first, its common to become very upset to lose something that caught your attention, being so light and free but its presence obvious and known to a young soul. Yet now, almost reaching the age of legal "adulthood", would I, myself, glue my attention to this balloon...or would I punch my senses to look at something else out of plain boredom?

Walking out of a Ukrop's parking lot when I was little, my mother used to encourage me to keep a firm grip on the ribbon attached to the twisted end of whatever flashing or character-printed birthday balloon she had just purchased. For one reason or another, I always found it to be the most exciting part of celebrating another year of existence. As long as I held onto it, how could the inflated figure literally leave me? The texture of the ribbon as a kid comes back to me now, how the rigid lines on its surface were supposed to aide your determination to simply hold on, even on the most windy of days. But, in reality, why DO they use ribbon? It's not the most trustworthy material!

But behind all this blabbering is a truth- we lose our fascination with the world as we grow. There are some things that I want to hold onto. Like how a field's thousand of grass blades become unified as a breeze tilts and pushes them in a new direction. How bright and vibrant a city street sounds during the day with dozens of people all having someplace to go, and if not, something to do. How music can illustrate visions inside your noggin, and pop goosebumps through your skin. And all this wonder and question? Well, I never want answers as to why these beautiful things happen, but I already know that many curiosities in our lives are the reasons why we are thankful for living.

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