It’s Spring here in Talent, Oregon. Which means, among other things, grabbing my small Olympus Pen camera and walking up the street by my house, to see what I can see.
And one of the things I see….is clouds.
J.R.R. Tolkien wrote:
But under a tall tree will I lie
And let the clouds go sailing by.
But the clouds I see with my naked eye look different to my camera, depending on what filtration I choose to apply. Cameras see things differently than we do….there is no one reality or one truth, but, presumably, an infinity thereof.
But on my street, it isn’t all just nature and growing things. There are cars. And, accordingly, per our social contract, where there are vehicles…there are speed limits.
In “Fight Club”, Chuck Palahniuk says –
“Recycling and speed limits are bullshit. They’re like someone who quits smoking on his deathbed.”
Is he right? Or is this too much of a black & white view of things? Are there any gray tones sandwiched between the extremes?
Or maybe it’s not a question of extremes, of bullshit and deathbeds, of black vs. white. Maybe the essential question needs to be reframed in terms of desires vs. rights, as Milan Kundera does so eloquently –
“the world has become man’s right and everything in it has become a right: the desire for love the right to love, the desire for rest the right to rest, the desire for friendship the right to friendship, the desire to exceed the speed limit…”
Looking at it this way, it’s not so much the numbers on a sign….but rather a question of where, exactly, one places one’s focus.
Which brings me back to clouds. And light. And the road I am standing on. There’s something about this place…
Maybe it’s time to go home now. As Tolkien says –
Roads go ever ever on,
Under cloud and under star.
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.