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Monday, 2 January 2012

111/365 - Learn from the Leaf (Anais Nin)

“In art, in history 
man fights his fears, 
he wants to live forever, 
he is afraid of death, 
he wants to work with other men, 
he wants to live forever. 

He is like a child afraid of death. 
 The child is afraid of death, of darkness, of solitude. 

Such simple fears 
behind all the elaborate constructions.
Such simple fears 
as hunger for light, warmth, love. 
Such simple fears 
behind the elaborate constructions of art. 

Examine them all gently and quietly 
through the eyes of a boy. 

There is always a human being lonely, 
a human being afraid,
a human being lost,
a human being confused.

Concealing and disguising his dependence, his needs,
ashamed to say: 

I am a simple human being 
in a too vast and complex world. 

Because of all we have discovered about a leaf...
it is still a leaf.

Can we relate to a leaf, 
on a tree, in a park, a simple leaf:
green, glistening, sun-bathed or wet, 
or turning white because the storm is coming. 

Like the savage,
let us look at the leaf wet or shining with sun, 
or white with fear of the storm, 
or silvery in the fog, 
or listless in too great heat, 
or falling in autumn, dying, 
reborn each year anew. 

Learn from the leaf: simplicity. 

In spite of all we know about the leaf: 
its nerve structure
phyllome cellular papilla parenchyma stomata venation. 

Keep a human relation -- 
leaf, man, woman, child. 

In tenderness. 

No matter how immense the world, 
how elaborate, how contradictory, 
there is always man, woman, child, 
and the leaf."

- Anais Nin
(Children of the Albatross)

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