Tuesday, March 27, 2007

on an island

John Donne said that "No man is an island". he said that with noble thoughts in mind. but he was wrong.

we are all islands, separated, isolated, alone. at times, it seems so that we can build bridges, that we can control some tectonic powers. we can voice our feelings, our deepest inner urges. we can use poetry, prose, plain language or even body language to communicate whatever is inside of us. but never all that is inside of us. our deepest selves are afloat on their own, never to touch anything but the ocean tides. every little piece of communication, be it of artistic value or not (or is everything art because it is a part of life?), is only pieced together on our own islands. we take the pieces of the puzzle always with us, to sit under our own palm trees, never under those of an island outside ourselves. and if we look at someone else's floating bit of land, then we do so through binoculars, our bare feet firmly resting on the crispy sand of our Self.

i do not doubt that we are all in the same vast expanse of water. i am not saying that our islandic natures should contradict with ethical values such as compassion or love, or that we can never live together in harmony.

what i am saying, is that Thomas Wolfe-like credo all over again; that solitude is the most central and inevitable fact of human existence. even those people closest to us will never really grasp us fully. and we will never experience the deepest sense of those around us - only the illusion of such a sense. we are all afloat, never to touch but superficially.

this is to be dreaded, or to be embraced. or both.

No comments: