I stand here, looking through the bars at the world blanketed in white. The silence is deafening – my ears strain to hear any semblance of life out there, of hope.Memories return of standing in a similar spot over 7500 miles away in a land I once considered my home. I stood there, waiting with the same anticipation I feel now, for someone to walk past to show me that there was more to this birdcage than the view. My little fingers could barely cover the bars back then, but my stance remained the same: a vigilance of anticipation for things to come.
Hope: a transient state uplifting the downtrodden, filling them with motivation to move on through the sludge and muck coating their lives. My hope was to escape the bonds of culture – to find a place where I belonged, where I could be me.
I will watch through those royal bars as the bride arrives in her golden birdcage – a foreigner like me to these lands fermented with mixed culture, both welcoming and exclusive. Yet, there she will stand, full of hope; a hope for understanding and acceptance of her love for something almost untouchable, a fairy tale. Speculative magpies will pick away at the silver threads and intricate bead-work of her bridal uniform whilst lightning flashes will capture her reactions for eternity. She will be judged from that first delicate step to her last as she stands side by side with her prince, looking through the bars, smiling hopefully at those witnessing their future.
I stand here pondering my past and my future as I watch the world blanketed in white. Snowy footprints tell me that someone has ventured out, over the meadow, into their unknown. I follow those lonely footprints and I find hope.