For the Gypsy

Imagine the brain is like a snow-covered mountain. There is clarity, peace, serenity, beauty, and a false sense of calm. Something is trembling. An underlying sense of unease that threatens the virgin landscape.

But with the right conversation buttons pushed, the avalanche begins.

It starts small, with a chunk of snow near the top. Just a sentence. A small phrase. As this chunk falls, it picks up momentum and begins dragging other pieces with it. Paragraphs, stanzas, trains of thought. More snow. Rocks. Trees. Small rivers and creeks. Woodland creatures who weren’t smart or fast enough to get out of the way. Adjectives, participles, verbs, nouns, prepositions.

As the pieces break away, they fall with increasing speed. Laughter, sadness, cathartic release. Until the momentum is unstoppable by any force known to man. The devastation in its path is incredible.

There is madness within. But there is happiness within the madness. Sentence fragments that cannot be articulated. The depths of the wall of falling material swirl with the sum of its parts. Half-formed ideas and expressions. Colliding. Swimming away. Mixing. Separating. Wearing itself down. Until all within become one and the same.

The timing is unique. While it seems to go on forever, and time at certain points appears to have stopped, it also passes with a speed that is incalculable. During the experience, it looks as if it will never end. Afterwards, it feels like it was over before it began.

The aftermath is amazing. The clarity, peace, serenity, beauty, and almost false sense of calm settles over everything. Woodland creatures return to the surface to survey the damage. A simple silence to digest the speaker’s words. The stronger rocks, trees, and rivers are still standing much as they were before. Perhaps a little buried, but not much worse for the wear. Some of the ones that appeared to be the weakest were still standing, while a few of the ones that appeared strong washed away like pebbles and twigs. And many things had changed their importance in the hierarchy.

In time, the snow will melt. The greenery will re-emerge and take root again on pieces of dirt that were previously unavailable. The destruction has cleansed and re-birthed the mountain. And as the white powder settles, a sense of perspective emerges. Yes, many questions were left unanswered, lost along the path. But a great deal more were answered, even some not expressed.

I could have gone on a long time without that avalanche. And perhaps never noticed I needed it. But when it was forced out of me, I feel better for the results. Yes, destruction and waste and chaos were involved. But my psyche is stronger, more stable, and full of conciliation afterwards.

Perhaps it needs to happen again. Perhaps even soon. And perhaps in a different form. A fire. A torrential rain. Gale-force winds. Something else that offers a complete and total devastation of the surroundings and my carefully created landscape.

Whatever the method, the result is the same. The destruction wears away the parts too weak to sustain the mountain, and too small to be of importance or significance. The post-apocalyptic relief is undeniably incredible. And the laughter echoes throughout all that remains.

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