Nonfiction | Interviews

Learning not to fly

The desire to fly is the breath of weariness

It is the swift overhead passing of a seagull which suggests to me that my fascination with flight is not that I yearn to fly but that I wish to escape completely my inner demons. My fallen angels of idealism. My automated days of work, of incessant calculations of the infinite responses to the interminable thread of responsibilities that seem to govern my existence.
I realise that the moments of peace I chase after are forever just moments. I will never stretch them out to anything more than a moment. The most I can hope for is a more expansive heart so that these moments fill up more of the empty space inside me.

The desire to fly is the breath of weariness. It is the tired exhalation that leaves my body as I understand that I am living the life I have, not the one I imagined I would live. In that life I am wiser,  writing text widely read, creating art with words and paint and clay. And people buy my work which allows me to do it again and again.
However with this understanding there is also,for the first time perhaps, the knowing that the life I have could not be better for it contains the people I love. And love is more important than words or paint or clay. The real art of my life has been surviving my mistakes.


Besides, relieved of the ghastly responsibility of having to create art,  I can write without hindrance,  with honesty. I can experience days of trudge knowing that most people feel the same way. I can drag myself to work and once there realise I actually enjoy it. I can, like everyone else, hanker after freedom from  responsibility. And yet, it is that same responsibility that allows me to look up at a seagull and see its beauty.

I imagine there must be at least one seagull out there who looks down and imagines how fine it would be to walk every day on the earth.