February 25, 2014 Zsuzsanna

inside/outside

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Water is like thick air. We can meet it inside us, as it moistens our lips, cools our throat and spreads, like a stain, in our stomach.

Or we can go:

inside it
feeling it with our body, feeling it change gravity and the surface of our skin, and our temperature and speed

on it
half held, half rejected – bobbing, floating, sinking a little

or feel it at a distance
considering it, watching it, feeling the sea breeze, remembering

This last way that is the most common. It includes our accumulated experiences of water. We ‘see’ the water with the knowledge that the surface is an illusion. We would sink through it

The little ripples remind us of bigger ripples and waves, of the ocean.

We are familiar with the wonderful impermanence of water bodies – parts of the surface shift this way then that, while other parts do something else, everything adjoining and affecting ever other part.

Even if we don’t want to drink the Yarra, we know it intimately, inside and out: we know what it would feel like speckling our face in tiny droplets, smoothing our lips, cooling the lining of our throat and spilling across the inner surface of our stomach – or we sense a slightly repellent lukewarmth and thickness in the water.

Peter Fraser

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