— Alfred North Whitehead
Or, at least, I have a new perspective on it.
How in this glorious, wide world do city-dwellers overcome feeling stifled?
I’m in this large city that is rich in opportunity. It’s a bustling area with long sidewalks and tall buildings that echo busy steps and hum with purpose.
Why is it that quite frequently I feel trapped and stuck? Honestly, right now, all I want to do is sing at the top of my lungs. I want to run and sing and dance until my legs shake and my lungs burn.
But I can’t.
At home, way out on the edge of nowhere, I could. I could go out into the open field that is my front yard, spread my arms wide, and all but yell anything my little heart desired — show tunes, Disney songs, hymns, commercial jingles, anything!
The openness and emptiness offers a different kind of opportunity. It is a place where expression can be loud and large and off-key, yet no one can hear me. The city doesn’t have that.
And that’s why I think I “get” some tiny portion of graffiti. It is a loud and large expression done in private. You wake up one day and there is new art, secretly made in the night; and it is now decorating the concrete. I know it would be naive and silly to say this creative thought applies to all graffiti, but I wouldn’t be surprised if for some of those artists, graffiti is a sort of city-version of my field-belting solos.
It is a way to survive and possibly overcome city-stifling.
All that to say, I think it’s high time for warmer weather to be showing up soon. These cold days are making me blue.