sakurajima

by mandaceehb

it’s hard not to get caught up in wanting to preserve every moment, when the silent sublimity of nature is all that surrounds you. it’s a break from the common sights that greet our eyes, twin peaks rising over fine greens, deep gullies coloured by light and shadow. we are so near but somehow it is unreal, as if we are the only reality in focus and it is but a faraway painting, faded edges and all. we capture the moments because we want to remember them, but I’m afraid of becoming overly obsessed with documenting every shift and experience. when i look at photographs months after the sight is crystal clear but the feeling may be irretrievable. and so this is my likely illogical rationale for climbing out onto the open-air deck of the ferry to catch my last sight of mt. sakurajima as we leave the island in a trail of bubbles and foam. we may all be of different ages and walks of life but i’d like to believe nature evokes in us a universal sense of awe; i watched an apple-cheeked little boy and girl come out onto the deck repeatedly to lean by the railing and gaze buoyantly at the volcano; a father and son share silent moments looking out to sea. the ferry is moving slowly but the wind whips harshly against bare faces; still the sight fixes us. and i know my human memory is much more fallible than a camera but this is my feeble attempt at trying to absorb nature in its pure unadulterated glory, to let go of technology for a little bit and remember the preliminary purposes of travel; to see the world in its natural state rather than through a pixelated screen.

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