“Twilight is orange because Daddy farted into it.” -our 6-year-old son
We have a quality view of the setting sun over a rounded and forested horizon through our bedroom window. Once in a while, we secure a tiny morsel of quiet leisure in our king-sized bed, which becomes mobbed when we all pile in it for an event we like to call Watching Twilight. This elusive period between day and night has always tempted my wonder. In those few seductive minutes, I swiftly feel at peace and at war with the world simultaneously. There is promise that Day will be satisfied to subdue when Night beckons eagerly, which is a good assurance. Because, Night has always been a dear friend of mine. Twilight is an occasion I compare to a van Gogh painting; one that is marked with rich oranges and subtle blues. I empathize with van Gogh’s sentiment for the complementary color scheme. After all, opposites do attract.
On this particular Watching Twilight, I held onto our 6-year-old son (but not with too much barefaced desperation, as he is getting older now, and we’re not supposed to inconvenience his growing sensitivity for personal space). The girls were playing not-too-conventionally tender. And, the husband was trying to appease his wife, making a delicate effort to win-her-over by gathering any clutter he could get his hands on. This picking-up of stuff led to a circumstantial bending-over directly in front of my son and I, with his rear to the sunset, just as I was explaining the color scheme’s significance. My son responded to this serendipitous happening with an unsophistication that I venerate. And within a split-second, the dialogue within my inner went like this: Imagine this visual. Discern the quote. Take in a breath. With the exhale, forgive all the solemnity and stringency. Laugh. And finally, choose to freely celebrate this naive, unschooled interpretation of the world.
Because, both worldly and unworldly experiences are equally valid, authentic, and fulfilling. It is our experiences that provide us with our own fingerprint “truths”. Whereas my truth involves warm secondary- and tertiary-colored brushstrokes residing feverishly within the visible wavelengths scattered among diverse atmospheric molecules; his truth seeks familiarity, humor, and levity. And, I think it is his truth that is most often more representative of the characteristics of community we desire in our lives: intimacy, joyfulness, lightheartedness. And, while we wait for a Watching Twilight opportunity, our “truth” is developing an identity. We own one identity in the midst of billions; billions of solar flares, billions of paintings, and (yes, let’s just laugh about it) billions of flatuses.
*Featured Artwork: The Sower by Vincent van Gogh, oil on canvas, 64.0 x 80.5 cm, Arles France, June 1888.