So, here’s the thing. I read so may blogs that have gorgeous photographs of forests and streams and words that tell everyone about the beauty of nature and how peaceful it is and how calming and wonderful (that, was a run on sentence).
But I rarely, see anyone writing about the majesty and beauty of cities…of skyscrapers, or the noise and wonder of millions of people, mostly getting along, or ignoring each other.
When I’m downtown (Chicago) I love to stand on the corner across from The Art Institute and just close my eyes and take it all in. The music of cars and voices, the smell of gas fumes, and flowers, hot tar and horns. It’s fabulous and makes my heart skip a beat, not because I’m being poisoned, but because I LOVE IT! I love skyscrapers. I love being in skyscrapers and looking out at the city/lake. I love the crowds, the noise and the incredible dance of people avoiding each other on the sidewalks. I love all of it. I love the huge flower baskets, the banners, the Bean, the Bandstand. I love the LAKE. I grew up at the North Avenue Beach. I love the rocks and I LOVE the pigeons and the people who feed them. I love the city. It’s calming, energizing, fulfilling and MY lake is as sweet as any stream, even it it does eat people and keep them forever. There’s a dangerous vibe, a love of life feeling, a mixing and mashing of cultures, art is everywhere, and again, the pigeons, who have a city attitude. And yes, the attitude is wonderful and familiar and it’s toughness and brutal and kind and sweet and it gives me so much more than a quiet day in the woods could ever give me.
I took this picture a couple summers ago. So beautiful to me. Standing next to a skyscraper makes me feel safe and puts people in their place as the tiny ants that they are. The huge buildings are sentinels who guard the city and Her people. Sure, there can be violence, but there’s violence in the woods as well. It’s all about what you’re used to. It’s all about what you love and know.
There’s beauty in everything, and everything feeds someone, fills their needs, wants, desires, idea of beauty. Not everyone loves forests and streams. They can actually creep some of us out, creating feelings of isolation and impending doom.
I know some people hate cities. I can understand that. The thing is, no one gives cities enough credit, so I just thought I’d let everyone know that cities can create their own kind of peaceful beauty. You can listen to its sounds, that are just as calming as a babbling brook, if that’s what you’re used to. If that’s what makes you smile.
Chicago is just a different kind of wilderness. Wild, untamed and definitely mine. It makes me feel invincible.