By Gabrielle Galchen
This poem focuses on the philosophy of interpreting life objectively; there is a certain calm in accepting reality as is, and taking pleasure in the mere fact of our existence.
The only fact is that existing rings Kinder chimes than thinking, A sickness which questions too much To waltz through time passing. Trees do not breathe, Waves do not beat, Winds do not whistle, Birds do not sing, The world does not exist For us to think about it. If it did, trees would inscribe Letters along the veins of leaves; Waves would whisper their messages Within the mouths of seashells; Winds would echo words Born of every hemisphere’s wisdom; Birds would sing in front of audiences Larger than squirrels and sky. But trees grow leaves to grow leaves, And waves beat to beat, Winds whistle to whistle, Birds sing to sing, And this is so because it is so. I am, I am, I am, And that’s it.
I was inspired by the work of my favorite author and poet Fernando Pessoa, a Portuguese writer in the 20th century. One of his heteronyms, Alberto Caeiro, focused on the idea that humans interpret life too subjectively, which makes them dissatisfied and unhappy. As an introspective writer, this sentiment especially struck me. I began to delve into the idea of interpreting my surroundings as objectively as possible and finding a tranquil sort of happiness within absolute fact. This poem hopes to reflect how existentialism is by no means a bleak philosophy. Rather, accepting our existence within the world without incessant questioning can be a form of brisk personal joy, a way of appreciating reality without embellishments.
Half Israeli and half American, Gabrielle Galchen will never quite fit in except for when she writes, when she belongs solely to herself and feels the most complete. As a senior in high school, writing is her objective way to make sense of the world and find herself. She is so honored to participate in a program in which she can pursue her passion; Girls Write Now has truly made her high school experience.