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POV: Reminders.

POV ("point of view") is a series that addresses many of the same themes covered in my Equals Record column: growing up, saying yes to adventure, learning to embrace a quarter-life crisis. Each POV entry will include a photograph and a short reflection based on what’s pictured. While my previous column focused largely on ideas, POV will focus on moments - glimpses, glances, tiny stories.  


This weekend, I hung art on the walls of my new bedroom. Near my bed, where I’ll see them when I wake up and go to sleep, are three favorite quotes. 

Let everything happen to you. Beauty and terror. That’s Rilke.

Had I not created my whole world, I would certainly have died in other people’s. Nin.

Craziness is heaven. Hendrix.

“Why so many words?” someone asked me.

“‘I’m forgetful,” I said. “I need reminders.”
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A couple of weekends ago, I drove two hours upstate with a group of friends in search of swimming holes and solace from the stifling heat. We hiked through the woods, leapt off rocks into water below, picked wild blueberries and ate them by the handful. At day’s end, we watched the sunset from an overlook by the side of the road.

There were no emails to check, no phone calls, no sounds except for the ones made by birds, trees, the shuffling of our feet in dirt. 

“We’ll be able to see stars tonight,” someone remarked.

I kicked off my shoes, stretched my legs, squinted in the orange light.

Megan turned to me. “Remember stars?” she said.

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We drove home the next night, late. Before we reached the city, before we hit traffic, or streetlights, or roads with other cars, I stood up in the backseat with my head through the sunroof. We wound our way through darkness. Rain fell.

“Sometimes I think I’m too old to do things like this,” Megan had said earlier. “Then I remember.”’

There were times, I added, when I would have been too afraid to follow unmarked trails; jump off cliffs; leave my life, even for a day. There was so much missing then - sunsets, wild berries, hiking in the shadows of trees. Giant leaps that were in fact not-so-giant but felt that way; wind and raindrops; winding roads and stars everywhere. 

The best reminders are often wordless.

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You can find my previous POV entries, here, and the archive for my personal essay column on the Equals Record, here - thank you so much for reading!
 

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