Wednesday, February 1, 2017

To the child


So much strife, rooted in the idea of ownership — in the idea that “this land is your land, this land is my land.” But this land, this earth, this space, this universe, belongs to no one, and the waving of flags and the defending of borders shows just how little we understand ourselves and our relationship with the world and its beautiful, diverse inhabitants — fellow creatures killed for sport, elephants for ivory, men, women, and children for their color, their religion, their oil. Before a border can come into being, it must exist in your mind. You must believe it is there. You must tell yourself, over and over, or be told, that those living on the other side of this make-believe barrier are so different from you that they must stay on their side and you must stay on yours. But this is utter nonsense. Because you have not done your own investigation, you have created and accepted the difference. And this has tragic consequences, as we daily see. To me, it is a beautiful thing when a child from the neighborhood wanders into the yard, led by a cat or butterfly, and then begins looking about. There is a lesson in this, and it is the simplest one of all: to the child, everywhere is home. And now I must confess, that although I wear the body of an adult, what a child knows, I have never outgrown. And what does a child know? Love, for all. So go ahead. Spank me. Or laugh. It hasn’t worked yet. It never will.



5 comments:

Gary B. Fitzgerald said...

This is truly exceptional. I wish I had written this!

William Michaelian said...

Thank you, Gary. I think by the very act of your attentive reading, you have.

Gary B. Fitzgerald said...

No problem. It was child's play. (Takes one to know one).
😀

erin said...

i can't help but smile all over this and remember the elderly neighbour we had a few years ago. she used to live in the house we then "owned" but because of dementia (wisdom?) forgot she no longer lived there. we kept finding her in our yard picking lilacs. or once or twice in our kitchen wondering who on earth had changed things. there was an inextinguishable radiance about her. i can see it still.

William Michaelian said...

Beautiful. It sounds like wisdom to me.