Sunday, June 22, 2008

Freedom From.


One day while rocking errands at school I walked into an elevator and hit the button for some floor above me. Its doors slowly closed and I felt the slight increase in my own weight as the box in which I stood moved upward. Then I felt nothing. The door, however, did not open to let me out onto a new level. There was no button I could press to set me loose, so I opened the panel in the wall behind which a phone should have been. I discovered only loose telephone wires. A cell phone check revealed that, inside this metal tomb, Verizon could not quite hear me now. After some beating and yelling, I tried my phone one more time. I made the best use ever of a single bar and got through to some assistance. Then I waited.

While I was in that elevator, all of my projects were suspended. Unless thoughts are also actions, I could do nothing. The moments of panic that accompanied the discovery of my stuck-ness fell away, and in their place I discovered perhaps the deepest peace that I have ever felt. Suspended between floors, I was free from all responsibility. The range of my movement was nothing. I felt no pressure for tasks undone. I felt no guilt for ill-made moves that I needed to correct. I was encased in box that had forgotten its purpose and because of this I could forget mine. It was quiet. I was quiet.

Even now, before I have even finished packing, I can feel this strange feeling of peace encroaching upon me. The frustrating weight of my projects is already lightening. I can feel the possibility of a free thought. This must be what is meant by escape. Perhaps daily life presents a tether that holds just as fast to those who love it as to those who wish they could realize something greater. For better or worse, I can feel this tether loosen. I wish I could get every last affair in order before I rock this exit. I wish I could hang out with every friend, get clear on every idea and make good on every promise. But I can’t quite manage this even when I have nothing but time in town. So I will settle for hearing my life fade as I give myself over to a new project. In Uganda, my tomb, my encasement, will be that strange esoteric border that exists from the moment I press record and hold a microphone out to the world.

1 comment:

VentCover said...

Well, the task before you is awesome. I feel that you are achieving that which many of us wish we could have in freeing yourself from the boundaries of this obtrusive existence here in America. Thanks in advance for keeping us updated and allowing us to steal a glance of your denization. If you ever need the thought: there are always cats waiting to ride when you get back.