Friday, October 25, 2013

Illumination



An owl sits perched, clandestine, in my chocolate-brown eyes. 
His presence is not ominous or foreboding, for he is a friend. 
He is my companion in my metanoia, the never-ending journey of the warrior of light. I am a warrior of light, but not always did I hold such grasping –a catalyst was my mortal unfolding and my everlasting rebirth.

It was last year where I was hit by an aha! moment, although I feel  mugged  would be a fairer description. Aha! moments are not meant to be sweet. They exist to snap us back onto our path, rev the engines, wipe the foul dust from our consciousness and show us that our lives are far too short to be wandering anywhere aimlessly. However as seemingly distressing as this may appear, the aha! moment is but the spark, lasting only for as long as it takes for the blow to collide. After that, the rest is entirely of our choice, and the owl, unperturbed by our perturbation, merely waits and observes. If we decide to run or shred the memo out of fear, then our next assault will only be more fun to experience as the aha! moment now knows, this one is putting up a fight.  The flight from our perch of safety and staleness is eased by a full set of feathers. Aha! moments aren’t fond of when we clip our wings, because as sharply as they may strike, they are truly only there to lead us to transforming into our greatest, most incredible Selves.  I have had several visits from my comrade the aha!, but once its message fully realised itself within me,  it was like my soul released a noiseless, ceaseless Yessssssssssss…… that would reverberate through my essentia, permeating truth through my being. 

In the beginning, I was in full awe-filled flight. I had had a glimpse of true divinity, a light bulb to follow and zoom around in my small moth form, yet when I decide to descend from my ray of sun to call to my brothers and sisters that I had found my it, and that I knew how they could find theirs, I was met by the darkness that dwells out of the aurora. I fell. I lay shattered upon my beloved Isengard, crushed by those who had ascended to my height through other means, but as I slowly turned grey, I realised that I was no longer the moth atop a tower of another’s building, but I was the wizard clasping the worn body and I could now soar.

The owl has and will always be the companion of those who glide from above. He is friend to even those who are below still, though his eyes open not within their night, moonless. We are scared of his large presence, until we realise that he is only big because we are small, and we are small because we have made it so. 
‘Playing small does not serve the world’, friends.  If there was one thing that existed to make an owl smile, it would be this insight, because no inkling of enlightenment has ever bestowed itself upon those who shrink to make others feel more comfortable. It is in our nature to want affirmation from the people around us that we are worthy and acceptable, yet with our catching of the wind, our soaring, we finally understand that we can twitter with the finches or we can do great things, but we cannot do both. 
We must not fear though, for there are others who glissade among the clouds and all that requires of us is to listen for the owl, for he is also with them. Then we may together glide with illumination, we wizards and warriors.

‘Looking up gives light, although at first it makes you dizzy’ Insignificance is not perilous. We sheer our sprouts of genesis out of fear of judgemental neighbours or hindrances along the path, but this is not the way. We must become warriors of light, apprentices to eternity, and pioneers of wisdom.  Once we connect with that which lives within, and no ground lies beneath our feet, we soon forget we ever had or required it.  

I wrote the above writing piece for my school's Creative Writing Competition, giving it the title Illumination. Our given piece of inspiration was the painting of the owl, eyes and bendy trees seen above, and the piece had to be from a personal point of view. 
At first, I was rather perplexed by what I could possibly write in response to the odd painting, but in the end, I will say, I'm quite ecstatic with how the piece turned out! I believe it to be one of my best Spirited Writings yet. I received a fantastic mark, but I still await for the news for whether I've won or not. I have a warm feeling about it though. 


Anthea

P.S Oh, and by the way, I'm sure you all remember the poetry piece I posted a few months back called My feet want to.... I mentioned below the poem that I entered it into a Writing Competition, and guess what? I was placed as a Semi-Finalist last week at a large winners ceremony! I will be  sharing that evening fairly soon.

P.P.S Dear readers, I am about to begin my Grade 11 exams in a weeks time, so in the case of my sudden disappearance for an extended period of time, fear not. I am still alive and will be back to blogging before you know it. Do Svidania.  

Saturday, October 19, 2013

'Paganini Liszt, La Campanella!'

























Lower jaw resting on feet, pupils enlarged, body, motionless. 
The sweet tune of La Campanella flows through my speakers, gifting me with the beauty that is the musical mastery of 
Evgeny Kissin.

Yet another child virtuoso, Evgeny Kissin is in my opinion one of the greatest pianists of our modern age. Born in Moscow, Russia, Kissin began classical piano at the age of six. Only four years later, at the age of ten, his debut performance was Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor with the Ulyanovsk Symphony Orchestra. 



A film was made by director Christopher Nupen, documenting Kissin's young life, his tidal wave of talent and the world's special taking to the concert pianist. 


Evgeny Kissin and James Levine playing Schubert, on a double piano
He has played all over the world, winning numerous prizes including a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance with and without an orchestra. He also has his Doctorate in Music. Wow. Wow.

The piece played below is by far my favourite. 
'Paganini Liszt, La Campanella!' he announced to the white ornate opera house, brimming with his adoring audience. 




The part where he plays the high register keys, I just about fainted it was so incredible. The sweat dripping from his face, now that is real performance.


Anthea



Friday, October 11, 2013

Shrouded in secrecy and totally unexpected

There are many places in our world that we, dwellers in but our tiny environment, are completely unaware exist. Thousands of websites and blogs, possibly even millions, work as informers to we www user with list upon list of Places you won't believe exist, Unbelievable views, etcetera, etcetera, and today I join the ranks as a 'Check out this amazing place' canary too. I find it my duty to be the ambassador for my dearest Russia and a place I bet you all have never heard of; Ussuriland.

























We all record them, but few of us ever end up watching all those 'interesting documentaries' on everything from the rubber industry in Vietnam to rare lizards in the Sahara. I for one always enthusiastically record away on the History Channel, NGO, Animal Planet, BBC Knowledge, but when Smash and Glee start taking priority for my very limited TV relaxation time, they just end up gathering dust and taking up space on my playlist. But, there are days when all my first choices are either watched or out of showing and I can honestly only take so much of trying to figure out what in the world is going on in Suits Season 3, considering I haven't watched Suits Season 1 or 2. That is when I go Documentary-ing. I had recorded this NGO series called Wild Russia, because as we all know, I love Russia, and so there I was scrolling up my playlist to find Wild Russia: Secret Forest

I was completely blown away with the profound beauty and contrast of nature in such a remote and awesome sliver of Mother Russia.



The video for viewing is below. Do watch it, and be as astounded as I was, and still am. If you're short for time, the most poignant views are these below:

1. Beginning up to 2:40 (Intro plus world's rarest leopard)
Absolute MUST watch: 15:05 to 15:53 (The Komarov Lotus)
2. 19:27 to 21:15 (Black Bear)
3. 23:44 to 24:06 (The marshes)
4. 27:09 to 29:40 (The seaside and the sea)
5. 33:40 to 34:58 (The great feeding at the lake, cycle of life)
6. 34:59 to 35:27 (Ussuriland in Autumn)
7. 38:27 to 39:40 (Winter hits Ussuriland)
8. 41:45 to 42:22 (The Indian Martin -adorable!)
9. 42:24 to 43:55 (Man's misdeed to the Secret forest and The King of Russia, the Armour Tiger)
10. 46:20 to end (Ending)



My heart sings for the grace of the Russian Wilderness.


Anthea