Thursday, 11 June 2015

I Am The Wave

When I read the theme for this week – Making Waves – my mind raced through all the times I have been a little, (or indeed) a lot obtuse when trying to effect change  in my family, my work or in my hobbies.

Then I thought about sound.  This may be because I am making a lot of sound waves at the moment, singing with Musica Lirica Opera in a brief theatre tour of Franz Lehar’s exuberant operetta, The Merry Widow.  I am only in the chorus but as an ex-professional,  ballroom dancer, I have been revelling in dancing  a much loved Viennese Waltz on a theatre stage for the first time.  At fifty-seven, it is a thrill to tick off another of my ‘things to do before you die ’ and move onto the next.

Re-inventing myself, accepting the limitations of my arthritic, spinal condition and still enjoying life is a life’s work.  Challenge keeps me moving forward, fighting the depression that is an inevitable consequence of chronic pain. A little singing and dancing is wonderful. But I digress…

In 2013, I watched a remarkable documentary on Channel 4 -  The Secret Life of Waves.  I love a bit of science , especially when explained in a ‘… for Dummies’  format.  This ticked all the boxes, including a sort of spiritual link between the process of making waves with a philosophical view of the life of a wave as equivalent to the human process.

When I watched the film, I was left with the feeling that wind, waves and the future of humanity on this planet are intrinsically linked. The film maker, David Malone suggests that  most of us now live in a static, quiet society, where we press a switch, the oven works, the lights come on and we listen to music. We no longer have visceral knowledge of the power that drives that energy.  Our ancestors had the water-wheel to grind their flour, the windmill to power their ovens and the steam turbine to drive their trains.

We are becoming mindful of the downward spiral of burning fossil fuels, although China is digging up and burning as much coal every year as was used to fuel our entire Industrial Revolution, to produce cheap exports that we lap up and throw away. But there is hope. The wind makes waves, full of transient energy that we can harness and use.  So we go back to the future, in the hope that there is a future with clean, renewable and mindful energy for our children and the generations to come.

The Wyre Estuary, for me the end of the Wyre Way, the final stop on our Walking on Wyre project last year, is soon to become the home of a tidal barrier that will provide wave power for the next 120 years.  I hope I am around to see it come on-line.

I am the wave.
I begin my life in water,
stimulated by the wind.
A ripple in the ocean,
builds to mighty wave.
The power begins to push
as surface tension pulls it down.
Oscillation in ellipses,
swirling round and round. 
Water is the medium,
transmitting energy,
pulsing ever shore-wards,
until the breaker sets it free.
There, some is reflected back,
restored into the sea,
or dissipates into the air,
as ocean melody.
Like the wave, I am a process,
I live through energy.
I breath, I feed, renew myself,
I reproduce and age.
I cannot stop the waves of life,
but I can learn to surf the change.
I can embrace the swell of youth,
catch the gently rolling tide.
Can take each undulation
and just enjoy the ride.
And when my life is ending,
I will break upon the shore,
dissipating into energy,
with one last mighty roar! 
Thanks for reading, Adele.