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Train Rides in India February 3, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Reflections Integrative Therapy @ 11:10 am
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Reading through my journal from India, today’s entry a year ago:

February morning on the train to Goa, the landscape slowly changing outside the window. Slums and unfinished high rises, rooms open like gaping mouths, giving way to open space, the occasional river and a blue sky desperate to be seen through the haze of burning trash. Make-shift homes dot the side of the tracks. The land seems to devour, slowly, patiently, whatever tries to find stability in it. Rusted out tractors succumbing to the relentless presence of all that is not human.

Morning glories grow amidst feces and layers of waste. And it reminds me that the lotus blooms in the mud.

My edge today is that this, the rawness and dirt of this, makes me so uncomfortable. I say that and I struggle to find beauty in all of this. And then I see a woman laying vibrant cloths out to dry and a simple red-framed shack and my edge blurs a little. Perhaps the dinginess is not out there but rather this window through which I gaze that is tinted and tinged. How do I clean this window, how do I clear the glass so that I can take all this in through a lens not so clouded by discomfort?

Or perhaps all of that is some of it, being with discomfort. Not trying to see the flowers in the trash, but seeing the trash. Seeing the suffering and the dirt. Letting it make me uncomfortable because it should. I will leave here in a few months and return to a land that fears the messy-ness of reality and humanity. Where authenticity is a struggle because honesty and speaking your truth is sometimes messy. There is a truth to the filth, to the dirt, and to living a life in it.

 

3 Responses to “Train Rides in India”

  1. j.g.t. Says:

    this is lovely

    On Mon, Feb 3, 2014 at 1:10 PM, reflectionsmassage wrote:

    > Reflections Integrative Therapy posted: “Reading through my journal > from India, today’s entry a year ago:February morning on the train to Goa, > the landscape slowly changing outside the window. Slums and unfinished high > rises, rooms open like gaping mouths, giving way to open space, the > occasiona”

  2. Hamilton Salsich Says:

    Alicia, this is an especially beautiful piece of writing. Here is just one example of your many sentences that are both elegant and forceful: “There is a truth to the filth, to the dirt, and to living a life in it.” I wish I had written that!

    I am sure there are editors out there who would love your work. Maybe start at the top, with The Atlantic, The New Yorker, etc., and keep sending. I have received hundreds of rejections, but so did Dr. Seuss and J.K. Rowling.

    Good luck!

    Ham

  3. Ba Says:

    What a wonderfully graphic piece of writing Wuz!! I recall while traveling back from Vietnam. I went through Thailand and India and it wasn’t until I got to Turkey and a walk along the Bosporus where I saw flowers in flower boxes that I’d realized I’d not seen any natural beauty like flowers for over a year, even flowers in the trash! Your writing brought me back to the true feelings that I had while in India. Thank you for your beautiful writing!!


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