Saturday, February 19, 2011

Tribute to the Wind

[ Before I get into my tribute to the wind, I just want to say this: The Grammy Award Ceremony was almost a week ago, but I am still elated that my two favourite bands of all time, Muse and Arcade Fire, won Grammys last Sunday (Muse’s The Resistance for Best Rock Album and Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” for Album of the Year). I am so happy for them! Last Sunday’s Grammys was the first ever that I watched from beginning to end. It was so exciting to watch both Muse and Arcade Fire perform! Ahhhh… I was in heaven. For the past seven or so years, these two bands have become important parts of the soundtrack to my life, and I am so thankful to them for creating such amazing, energetic, passionate music for the world to experience. My life has been richer because of their music. Woo hoo! ]

Anyway, back to my regularly scheduled blogging:

Here's a riddle - I got this one from The Hobbit:

Voiceless it cries,
Wingless flutters,
Toothless bites,
Mouthless mutters.

Whatever could this be?

This past week has been quite windy—at least in Niagara. Just over a week ago, the temperature dropped to -11 degrees (Celsius). Yesterday, the temperature was +11 degrees. On freezing cold days, the wind seems to slap you in the face—an extra sting as though the biting cold wasn’t bad enough. However, on mild days, like the past couple days, the wind is welcoming. Instead of trying to hide my face from the wind (it still found me), on Thursday and Friday I found myself turning my head into the wind, like a dog sticking its head out of the car window on a “road trip.”

I wrote a little descriptive piece as my tribute to the wind. The wind is so interesting to me, for the reasons succinctly described in the riddle above. Here it is (OK, yes, I may have romanticized the concept of “wind” just a little):

A little boy and a little girl played outside on a windy afternoon. The sun was shining bright and white on the world that day. The little girl’s brown hair lashed violently around her sweet face. Her cheeks flushed with excitement as she kicked a bright yellow ball to the little boy in anticipation of the being kicked right back to her. Their game was extra challenging on that afternoon, thanks to the wind.

The boy kicked the ball back to her and then was distracted by a pink flower quickly losing its petals to the sharp gusts of wind. He picked the flower and ran over to the girl. His dirty hands handed the flower to her; her somewhat cleaner hands took the flower as the last two petals flew away. The girl kind of wondered why he had given her a flower without petals. To her, a flower without its colourful petals equalled a flower without beauty. She tilted her head to one side and looked at him questioningly.

“I don’t like the colour pink,” the boy explained. The flower, as is, was beautiful to him. He smiled his winning smile. (His impish dimples compensated for a few missing teeth.)

“Girls like pink,” the girl countered. As she shrugged her small shoulder, the hand that was holding the flower relaxed enough that the flower (well, just the stem, really) blew away.

“Oh,” both the girl and boy said as the wind stepped in and snatched up the stem.

And so, the wind, everywhere and nowhere, here and then instantly there, loud but soundless, angry but emotionless, moving this and that around with neither a mind nor a body, invisible but for its path of destruction, interrupted the girl’s and boy’s childlike discussion of the definition of beauty.

The flower’s remains—both the pink petals and the stem—wove in and out and through the wind’s nonexistent yet long and slender fingers. The wind had succeeded in collecting all the broken pieces. To an observant thinker, the wind might have seemed to be trying (unsuccessfully) to fit all the pieces back together, mindless and numb as it was.

The children soon forgot about the pink flower and resumed their game with the yellow ball.
The wind, on the other hand, fought without focus to create something beautiful from various fragments of nature, shreds of garbage, plastic bags from the next neighbourhood over and fervent promises escaping mouths only to be thrown into the wind’s undertow.

Ah, what a sweet melody; all the sounds spoken became windy whispers as they were carried along to blend with other sounds. Listen to the conversation of the blowing breeze—let it ease you.

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