Lines. There are lines everywhere and anywhere. Curved, straight, short, long, and everything in between. Manufactured things have straight lines more frequently than God-made lines. Walking on a trail in a forested area, straight lines are almost non-existent. Trees come close – their trunk rises from below the ground high up into the sky while their branches reach out horizontally in their attempt to touch other living things. As the branches reach out, the twigs and needles go out in even more directions, pointing out in a different way than the one beside. It’s like the needles don’t want to touch each other, and the pointed ends make it difficult for them to be touched at all. Grass doesn’t like to grow at the base of the tree for fear of getting struck by a falling needle. The grass grows up to the sky like the tree but, not having the strength of a trunk, falls over far earlier than the tree. But don’t we reach the sky at any distance from the ground?
Man made lines are no less beautiful than natural ones. There is beauty in their uniformity and perfect spacing. Watching the sun shine through venetian blinds, the reflection on the wall splits the light into lines and dots. Glance down a hallway of tiles or wood planks and notice the sunlight bouncing off the lines, onto the wall and back.
At a musical theatre, lines are placed strategically to maximize the sound quality for the audience.
These lines prevent the loss of sound that occurs in an outdoor space, where it goes to the sky, lost in the clouds and sunshine. The lines on the walls and ceiling give way to the lines of the staff holding the musical notes. The music flies through the air, around the lines of the chairs in the audience, the aisles leading to the stage, and the floor of the stage. Beautiful lines creating beautiful melodies.
My brain is full of lines, although anatomically there are no straight ones inside it. Try as I might, I can’t find a perfectly straight line anywhere on my body without somehow holding it that way. Hair can be straight, and nails may be cut straight but it’s difficult to find God-made straight lines anywhere. The trunk of a spruce tree heads toward the sky in what appears to be a straight line. But it’s not perfectly straight, that’s one of the reasons why we trim it so much before we use the wood for building. Living in the city, straight lines are everywhere.
Our house is full of them – wood floor, baseboards, cabinets, desks, TVs… the list is almost endless. In the refrigerator there are fewer straight lines – none of our fruits and vegetables come in straight or square varieties. It feels like what is straight is man-made and what is natural or God-made is not quite straight. This leads me to believe that our obsession with straight lines is fairly recent in human history.
In response to the Weekly Writing Challenge.