There is beauty in the idea of a passing moment. It’s a strange type of beauty. Not the traditional idea of beauty that you would typically expect to see in a beauty pageant, or on the front page of a women’s magazine. It’s a strange, unsuspecting type of beauty.
It’s the kind of beauty you feel deep within, like when you see a colour that you didn’t know could exist. Your body is in a state of transient shock, experiencing a quick flash of life that might never pass by again. The feeling is completely ubiquitous in that moment, yet completely absent the next.
The feeling is the glance of a beautiful stranger on the street or at a bar, the excitement devouring you whole for that moment in time, distracting you from everything you’ve ever worried about for a miniscule of that second. The feeling is the scent of a meal you didn’t know could bring you so much pleasure in one mouthful, your whole body is sent into a frenzy, a distracting craze of want and need to devour it all right there and then. The feeling is the touch of a lover, a warm body pressed into yours, molding into each other for a moment, the state of pure ecstasy present yet passing.
The impermanent state of a passing moment is what causes our hearts to beat out of our chest when we see someone we love. It is what causes us to revel with joy when we can’t contain our happiness. It is what makes us ache when we are riddled with sadness. The quick hit of emotion is all consuming, whether it be the most overpowering sense of enjoyment. Whether it be the deep laughter shared in a moment between two old friends sitting on a park bench after 20 years of friendship, heaving and writhing in stitches of joy. This moment is so incredibly powerful right there and then, flooding their minds with nothing else but warmth and fondness.
Whether it be two elderly men talking about the dance they both took their wives to when they were sixteen. Remembering the shots of whiskey they drank for courage beforehand, both too proud to admit they were absolutely terrified. The moment of nostalgia floods back as one man still morns his beloved wife. The taste of the whiskey still as present as ever just as her powder blue dress was still as beautiful as ever.
A passing moment is something we can’t catch. Nor can we hold onto permanently. The beauty of a fleeting moment lies in that very fact. We can’t grasp something we cannot touch, only feel it deep within our bodies, within our minds. Here lies the beauty of something truly bizarre, the beauty of memories, of glances, of jokes, of pain, of love and of life. The one surety we have is that we will feel these fleeting moments again, but they will never be completely the same.
That concept is the greatest of all. We don’t know what we will feel, or when, but the beauty of passing emotion, of fleeting feeling is part of our makeup, of our process. The haunting, exciting journey of being a person, of living and of loving is what makes each of us who we are. Permanently or not, one thing is for sure.
We all feel.
And that feels good.