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Poetic Essay: “Colors”

A little poetic train of thought thing I wrote on 750words.


The colors we neglect to see.

The colors that are all around us, ever present. How rarely do we turn our heads up and truly look at our surroundings.

How often does not the world reduce itself to a grey and monochrome backdrop to our lives?
Instead we focus on ourselves, the players on the stage and fill our lives with the color we create ourselves. Outlandish fashion choices, make-up on our faces and hair that is not our natural color. How long has not been the mode for expression among the young?

We color our world with spray paints and find ourselves reduced to criminals, to make the grey background a little more technicolor.
But what we forget is that we, us humans are the ones that turned the world that grey color we now strive to make more colorful again. We created those concrete buildings, those stone walls and the long, flat stretches of pavement.

Step outside, beyond the cities and the streets of grey and black and charcoal and graphite.
See how everything there reflect the seasons.

Watch the trees start the year bare and dark, but covered all over with clouds of snow and a thin fuzz of frost, not unlike the first beard cultivated by an awkward teenage boy. See the snow melt and small, yellow-green buds slowly emerge from those dark and bare branches.

Watch how spring transforms a barren world into new green, yellow and pink. Fresh leaves and dainty flowers on the trees, shadowing those first spring flowers of white and yellow, sprouting from last year’s brownish clumps of grass. Behold the first butterflies with their brittle, but beautiful wings of red and yellow and blue and orange. Hear the bees buzz and the migratory birds call to their mates.

Watch the leaves darken on the trees, watch those flower petals rain down as a reminder of how fleeting beauty is, but how it will also return in a new form, cyclical and eternal. The new grass emerges from tired lawns and more flowers appear in an explosion of color and shapes. Red, violet, purple, blue, burning orange and bright yellow. They fill the world with color, fragrance and life. Bird of equally colorful plumage perch among those leaf-laden branches and sing their hearts out, filling the world not only with color, but also song. The oceans become dotted with seabirds, returned from their winter haunts and everywhere there is new life not only among the plants, but also among the animals. Colorful and fuzzy baby animals romp around among the leaves and the grasses.

Watch then, how they all grow up, watch the flowers fulfill their duties and swell up with fruit. The gardens overflow with vegetables and the tree branches are heavy with their bounty. The leaves then change color once more, the green slowly leeching out, leaving a wonderful new array of colors as a grand finale. Yellow, then orange, then burning reds. It all seems to happen in an instant and suddenly the forests are a firework of blazing colors, the forest floors equally so as the leaves slowly trail down and nestle down on the ground. They fall to create that first warm covering for the new seeds that are already nestled there among root and stems. They wait as the colors slowly leech out, to save energy for the next year’s buds.

And for a short while the world outside our cites appear as color- and lifeless as our grey office buildings and skyscrapers, as bleak and barren and sad. But then come the frost, with its white, brittle fingers. Then come the first snows, covering up all in a soft, warm blanked of aerated frozen water.

Everything goes to bed in an instant. Everything becomes quiet and muted. But even in this silence that dominates all, life is not gone. The animals in their new winter coats are still there, some less visible than others. You might not see the hare as he huddles among the bushes, but you might see the gallant fox in his thicker red coat of fur as he sneaks about in the snow, listening forĀ dormiceĀ and other rodents as they scamper about in their tunnels, buried under that snow.
There are also colorful birds that remain, the ones we closely associate with the winter holidays for their bright red plumage. Watch them perch among the branches and nibble on the berries left behind on the trees, as a snack for them and them alone.

And then it all begins anew as the snow melts again come spring.

Watch all of this and marvel at the miracle of nature, the cyclical nature, the colorful nature. Watch this and remember the world outside the grey constructs us humans have made for each other. Don’t forget the color that has always existed there for us to enjoy. Don’t forget the nature that has been there since our forefathers first stepped out into the sun.
Don’t forget all it can bring us, not just color, and then maybe we can learn to care for it better.

Because nature is where it all came from.

Where we all came from.

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