Vast Expanse

I am enamored with wide open spaces. I love looking out and not being able to see the end. I em enthralled with unending horizons and roads that disappear into nothing. I am getting my fill here by the ocean. The beach just goes on and on and on, never ending. I mean, it seems as if you could walk it for days and not run out of beach. It amazes and intrigues me. 

I am not sure where this infatuation came from. I had no views as a kid. I mean, I grew up on the suburbs of Detroit, where it was flat and littered with cement and houses and strip malls. There were no mountains, no seas, no vistas to take your breath away. During my childhood, we spent a couple vacations on one of the great lakes, not sure which one, and that was pretty close. Those lakes are so big you cannot see the other side. I only remember playing on the shore, with the black slate rocks and trying to see who could get the most skips out of their stone. We had to be careful walking around that shore as those edges could really cut you, too. 

I love being at the top of the mountain, even if the climb there scares the literal shit out of me. I like the vantage point of being able to see the weather coming at you, watching it for hours on end, as the clouds form, storms track, suns set and rise. Something about being at a vantage point just makes me feel good, feel centered, feel whole. I feel part of something greater than myself in these places, yet I feel part of it, too. 

Perhaps it is a visual representation of what I believe down to may core, that I am merely a small part of this world, of this Universe. I am merely one grain on these sands of time, small and insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Perhaps it is my deep rooted sense of God and of something greater than myself that overtakes me when I see a landscape or seascape or mountain-scape that I know is more powerful and timeless and endless that I will ever be. Reminding me of my smallness, yet of my place in this world. Reminding me of the enormity of this place of which I am a part. 

I am in awe of these places, these views, these embodiments of nature and of our world. I am mesmerized by their brilliance, their strength, their infinite power and grace. The fact that they have been here since before time was time, and that they will be here long after any memory of me is gone. I spend moments just staring at these places, watching the clouds turn, watching the tide come in and out, listening to the sound as the winds blow. Sitting in the presence of such greatness humbles me, vexes me, puts me in a state of awe. 

I have lived in houses that had a view of sorts. Something out the window to see. I would arrange my furniture to face that window. Like it was a TV, the view was the focal point. I could, and did, sit and just watch out the window. Look at the weather, the clouds, the cars or wildlife, whatever was happening had my attention. Maybe I would be playing a little computer game or playing on the internet as well. But, in between whatever I was doing, I would stare out the window and watch. It was comforting. Somehow I was connecting with that thing that was greater than me, that vast expanse I have been so enamored with. Even if all I could get was a little snippet of a view, just a taste of what was really out there, I needed to see something. 

If or when I decide to settle into a stick house again, I must remember this part of who I am. I must live somewhere that I can see. I mean see for miles, for days, for ever. I must see the weather, the sky, the mountains or the hills or the sea. I must see something that is greater than myself so that I am reminded each and every day that there is something out there that is greater than me. So that I am reminded of the beauty and the power and the awesomeness of my world. So that I am always humbled, always in awe, always with that sense of place in such a wonderful, amazing and dynamic place. So that I am reminded of home. 

One Comment on “Vast Expanse

  1. I have that same love of wide open spaces – big skies and endless horizons. For me I think part of it was my childhood growing up in farm country with its rolling lush green hills and big pillowy clouds; when we moved up north the sky felt so different – I felt like we lived on the “bend” of the world and you could see it in the way the clouds traveled across the sky. I was in awe of the big open skies of New Mexico last year and think about them all the time – the way the setting sun would paint the sky a million different shades. When I had my Tarot cards read for the first time she told me she could see me somewhere with wide open spaces….. a beautiful post Michelle. I really got a sense of the places you are seeing. Cheers!

    Like

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