A curious caravanserai of notoriety and nonsense, poetry and prophecy.

Reflections of a weirdo

A number of my compatriots have recently remarked upon the queer knack I have for getting myself into – shall we say – unconventional situations.  Some I will blog about presently; others I think are best reserved for a less diffuse medium than the internet. (I mean honestly. My parents read this.  Hi, guys!) Anyways, I have come to the conclusion that my curious magnetism towards absurd (awesome!) predicaments (adventures!) is principally genetic: inherited from my adventurous, estimable – and nothing if not glamorous – grandmother, fondly known as The Other Mary Travers and/or Gran.  I suspect that my direct bloodline from this Lady – for there is no other word for a being of her gravity – supplies me in particular with a strong inclination to never turn down an opportunity.  I will not pretend that this is the most efficient lifestyle, but I assure you it is among the most exciting.

This listing towards the unknown originates from a firm conviction that one – that I – may never be able (and certainly cannot now) to fully discern in advance where the gems of one’s life will be unearthed.  Similarly, I believe the world to be relatively unrevealed to most of us in its fertility, so (you might say) I’m not terribly opposed to fanciful “digging.” (Pardon the metaphor, I have long nursed a nerdy fascination with archaeology.) In my experience this kind of opportunistic self-indulgence is often more rewarding than a methodical approach, although undoubtedly both have their place.

Random personal examples:

1)   There is no country too small or random or off-the-beaten-path for you to go live in!  In some ways it may seem like the end of the earth, but if you are perceptive, you will quickly appreciate how it may also be the center of the earth.

2)   To follow up on number one, there is no language too small or too random to learn. I have done less of a good job at this one, but it is unquestionably true. Any new language is like a rocket ship to a new planet.  It’s ok! I’m not saying you ought to devote your life to learning every language you come across.  But while you are living in a country, I believe it is absolutely essential to learn as MUCH of the language(s) spoken there as possible.  Maybe my rocket ship will never get to Planet Twi or Planet Maori or Planet Kirundi or whatever (bear with me).  But you (I) still went on a rocket ship! Even if the windows were kind of fogged up, it was probably a sweet ride! And who knows, maybe it changed your (my) frame of reference permanently, learning those jokes about obrunis and obibinis, wrestling with the concept of kaitiakitanga, laughing at how fun it is to bow and say in a thick Italian accent, “Murakoze cane, tuso subira abagenzi!”

3)  On a different note, I recognize that (in high school in particular) I have/had a tendency to dress…shall we say…unexpectedly.  Yes, maybe you (Hi again, parents!) have looked at me and shaken your head at my foolish/outrageous clothing (or behavior, speech, make-up, decisions, interests, inquiries) choices.  But who knows, if I’m lucky, maybe 50 years from now they’ll call it art, the controversy, the #georgialogic, the weird bubbles I blew into your life.  Here’s hoping the stigmatisms in society’s vision – the mentally ill, the rule-breakers, the reckless ones – we are what ultimately illuminates new dimensions of sight, or at the very least its obscure peripheries!

And here’s a poem I wrote, on the off-chance that my erratic excavations fail to make me epically significant in “The Grand Scheme of Things”!

You know what? I rather like that. (“Now here!” said I with a sudden cry, “is my cre-ma-to-ri-um!”) I think I’m going to title this poem


The Grand Scheme of Things

by Georgia Travers, 13 November 2013
Dubai, UAE


Maybe when I die
I will be young
I will be stillfoolish
still tormented by the blinking ‘alreadys’
that gloat like jellyfish
around even my proudest thoughts

Maybe when I die
I will be small
I will be smallwriting
flat articles no one reads for papers
that neither sell nor pay
articles about big men (always written by small men)
and sometimes (in my case)
not even that

Maybe when I die
I will be usual
I will be stillnotmattering
In this strange world preferring
people careless and conspicuous
at love for things
to people minor and meticulous
at love for people

Maybe when I die
No one – small or big (blinking or preferring) – will say
She mattered.
Maybe no one will remember me the way they remember
The times tables date of Pearl Harbor and
Atticus Finch.

But I hope they will remember me
like a path through the woods in the snow
(only really there when you walk it)
like a poem that was never written down
(it was simple and true and everyone remembered)

Maybe when I die
Some will say
She mattered just the same
As one tiny, blushing jellyfish
As a single crooked snowflake from – remember that blizzard in ’96?
As the improbable newspaper that once gave some other small person an hour’s reprieve in the coffee shop of their life

And I will be happy.
Because whether they say it or not, I’m telling you now:
I will have lived.

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