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Nature: Crying for Me
I sat on the edge of my bed, fiddling with a loose piece of string. I felt guilty, but she kept saying it was not my fault. I tried not to make eye contact as my best friend, a girl I have known for years, one who I’ve spent countless hours with, playing video games and talking about boys, bawled her eyes out.
“I wish you could see it. I just wish you could see it,” she whispered.
My friend seemed to have a special lens when she admired the world. She would stop at a cloud, a tree, a leaf and she would stare at it. I did not know why, I always wanted to go inside. I didn’t like the cold air in the winter and I didn’t like the sticky, humid summers. I knew she was taking part in an experience I simply did not understand. She would try to describe it, she would say, “Look. Look at the green, it seems to pop, doesn’t it?” and she would laugh, as if the green in the leaf was a punchline to a joke.
My friend’s tears kept coming. I wondered how she could cry for so long. How does she not tire? Then I realized it was just another thing I was too simple minded to understand.
She cried for me. She cried out of pity. She had an appreciation for Mother Nature that gave her fuel to carry on. She described to me that nothing can ruin her day because she could always go on a walk. That was all it took to calm her sorrows, a walk in a field.
“Please just try,” she would beg me. As if I had no desire for her sight.
“The sky is blue, but it’s so much more. It stretches far off, farther than I can think of. It reminds us how small we are, how truly unimportant. When I look at the sky, my problems become trivial. Everything does compared to the beauty the sky possesses.”
I understood the logic. The sky is big, I am small. That made sense, but my friend was crying. She was crying and claiming I was missing out on the best thing life has to offer, the poetry of nature.
Eventually her tears dried and she apologized. I told her she didn’t have to be sorry, and that I wish I could comprehend what she saw in the sky and in the trees.
Years passed and my friend began reading Emerson and Thoreau. She would sit outside and soak in the atmosphere. She was content.
Today, I take walks. I read books about the gift of solitude. I listen to my friend speak of nature. I make an honest attempt. I may never grasp the beauty, but I will never stop trying.