by Monim Wains
What is life but a string of fibres tied from you to some stranger, perhaps momentarily intertwined? What is life but the tangling of those threads into the tapestry of your memories? Were we not all strangers to this world on the day when we were born?
From that day on, we grow, and hope above all hope that we are not strangers anymore. From the clinging of a baby to a mother’s thumb, to the reaching of a hand in its final moments of life: let us not be strangers, we yearn.
So, we capture our memories in pictures where we can. On idle days, to relive those moments, we stroke the page with tenderness. As if to relive the emotions in the air when the camera flashed, mingling with the colours of the ink. Alas, it is but ‘silver nitrate and the particles of smoke’ left behind.
A final hope, then, if we are to be strangers to the world: let us not be strangers to ourselves. We can own the knowledge that life is fleeting, unravelling, untying everyday. And with that, we can learn to let go – learn to ‘trade those remnants of the past’ ‘to seize the present’ instead.
And perhaps, one day, long into the future, when our age can no longer be hidden, and our years grow weary on our skin, we can finally understand… we are all in this together.