Sunday, 27 July 2014

"I need one of these storms to wash me clean"

I've always found something magically ominous about the patchy ink-stained sky in a storm. I've never shied away in a self-constructed pillow fort willing for it to pass. I've always pressed my nose close to the window, willing it to sweep me up in all of it's ambiguous power, adorning me with my own glittering red heels. I seek the adrenaline woven into the patch-work clouds; the thread that holds them together. These ink-coloured-clouds are filled with potential. Like the potential ink has, to create a chain of words on paper that could destroy a life; the power in held in these mysterious dark clouds could shatter life to the same effect. 

The moment before the storm hits is the moment in which this wished-for adrenaline rushes through your veins, an all consuming wave that each blood cell surfs upon. This is the moment when the wind teases the atmosphere; causing the wisps of hair tucked loosely behind your hair to escape and flutter around your face; causing pages of a notebook to quiver and causing a deep subconscious fear to develop, that's soon washed away with a wave of excitable adrenaline.

 The power unravelled in that split second when all goes quiet before the first throat rumble of the guy in the sky is when the vast expanse of nothingness above our heads is filled with electrifying sounds and colours, like the way in which a dormant volcano erupts over an unassuming town, its previously stagnant energy transformed. 

My natural penchant for storms probably falls due to the fact that I was born in the after-math of a summer storm back on August 5th, 1999. I have a feeling that this feeling is just there, as is the distant idea of fate that I cannot quite get my head around.

The storm that cascaded over the heart of the South East of England last weekend left me with one overwhelming message: we are really nothing in comparison to nature.

With night's cloak draped around our shoulders, my best friend, my Dad and I sat subdued on my front lawn at the sheer power of the storm last weekend. I could not help but reflect at simply how insignificant we are as humans. For all we know, we could be a pin sized pothole on one long stretch of the universe. We will never know.  Nature was here first, and it will always be that way. 

And that realisation does not seem coincidental to the fact that in the above picture, illuminated by a sheet of lightning, the clouds have formed a 'face'. It's as though nature is looking down on us all, willing us to evolve from our self-centred and pompous mindsets and realise that we simply a visitor on this blue and green sphere. I'm far from superstitious but the face seems simply too much of a coincidence. Is there really somebody, looking out for us? The literal parent? I do not believe in 'God' as such. Nonetheless, I do like to think that there is something, or somebody, waiting for us after we take our last breath of fresh air. 

I wouldn't say that it scares me. In a way, I find it subtly reassuring. If I make a mistake in life, I suppose that it can be overlooked in comparison to bigger things. I remember reading a poem in the GCSE English literature course called 'The Moment' by Margaret Atwood. The last verse struck a chord, and it goes like this:

No, they whisper. You own nothing.
You were a visitor, time after time
climbing the hill, planting the flag, proclaiming.
We never belonged to you.
You never found us.
It was always the other way round.

This idea that we are simply a visiter is re-assuring. We might spill cups of tea in nature's metaphorical home and make mistakes but it will all be forgotten about. We need to keep our head clear and not aloof with our behaviour of 'planting the flag'. The storms do this, they clean our minds.
Storms wash away the dirt and grime that accumulate throughout seasons blighted by drought; cleansing the streets and minds with a reinforced sense of hope. The wind that battles against tree branches and aerials is not something to be feared: the wind will help you to fly, fly high above the world and help you to re-evaluate your being from a birds eye view. When the clouds clear and the gentle tapping of rain resides to a corrupted calm, you can inhale the deep smell of renewed life, and appreciate life in all of its subdued glory. 

I'll leave you with one of my favourite poems by D.Lawrence. In a true English-student manner, let me point out the structure of the poem as it amazes me. The structure is chaotic and unpredictable, as is a storm. Then look at the first first. It's shaped like a lighting bolt. I think the way the words are possessed and manipulated is absolutely ingenious. Literature never fails to astound me, reinforcing the exact reasoning behind my undeterred, simply adoration of words.

"Now it is almost night, from the bronzey soft sky 
jugfull after jugfull of pure white liquid fire, bright white 
tipples over and spills down, 
and is gone 
and gold-bronze flutters beat through the thick upper air.

And as the electric liquid pours out, sometimes
a still brighter white snake wriggles among it, spilled
and tumbling wriggling down the sky :
and then the heavens cackle with uncouth sounds.

And the rain won’t come, the rain refuses to come!

This is the electricity that man is supposed to have mastered
chained, subjugated to his own use!
supposed to!"

-Storm in The Black Forest - David Herbert Lawrence

Do you revel in storms as much as I do?

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