Friday, 9 October 2009

I cried today

The day today was engagingly beautiful, clear blue skies that required no need for a coat to defend. For four week previous to today the man at the top of the John Hancock’s building tells us, 94 stories up, you could not see the next tower due to cloud. But today we can see far into the horizon of Lake Michigan. As we wondered thru Chicago towards Millennium Park we were unsure what we would find, newness and discovery are great companions on a journey. Perhaps part of what I have discovered on this journey is that expectation should be much more of a constant companion in everyday life. But do not rule out surprise. A life without surprise is a life without joy and I am aware now that too many of my days before this journey have been joyless, lacking surprise and light with expectation. But today is a day of surprise. As we walked across the water of Crown fountain towards the next event I was unprepared, for how can you prepare for joy. Before me, before us all was something of joy. Here in the park was Anish Kapoor’s The cloud. I have seen it on TV in books on cards many times before i was familiar with its image but unprepared for its encounter with me, with us. Nothing separated you me from this encounter; no barrier, no stage no wire. No guard, no glass, no predetermined distance set by the board.
People in wheelchairs rolled up to it. Young children patted it. Couples lay underneath it. And I watched. Groups of young people gathered together stared up laughed and took photos. It stood above old wise people. It offered shelter to the young and foolish who we need to change the world. And i watched. There was laughter and running, stillness and quiet. And I watched. We looked together, apart. For this encounter there was no language to divide or unite. It offered us a view of ourselves set against the world around us and asked nothing of us. And I watched
And as I circled and watched and saw myself with others, I cried.

Here is a link to see lihttp://www.millenniumpark.org/artandarchitecture/cloud_gate.html

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2 comments:

  1. Hi Nigel.
    Looked at the photos of the Cloud Gate it is very beautiful but a photo can only give you a hint of what it must be like to stand and look into it or walk round it you lucky bugger.
    There is a Anish Kapoor exibition at the Royal Academy London untill Dec 11 we should go.
    Mike.

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  2. Hi Nigel.

    As you come to the end of your American Odyssey I have been reading thru your blogs and I am left with these thoughts wizzing thru my head.As you know when it comes to moving my thoughts into another medium it usually goes tits up, but let’s try.

    Your insight, your descriptions and your feelings all come clearly and with compassion, from your own feelings in Salty Bacon, the sadness for the people with the paper cups,and the man sleeping on a bench at Venus Beach, and the joy of the Cloud Gate.

    You have a gift, and without doubt a gift from God.

    A wise old Greek philosopher once said “The only true wealth is the wealth of the mind” you are a rich man Nigel, but I’m not sure you realise it.

    God bless you

    Michael.

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