What is it about sparkly things that captures our attention?

I don’t think I’ve ever described anything sparkly in my writing. As much as I pause, mesmerised, by a window display full of colorful jewelry or an aisle of beads and baubles, I’ve never written them into a story.

I think this needs to change.

While I was at work today at a different location than my usual, a coworker got a box of beading supplies out for someone. I was helping to paw through it to find something for her to use and I found amber-golden beads smaller than popcorn kernels, tropical-ocean-blue beads the size of apple seeds, and chunky oblong purple-grey things nearly an inch long. The potential that sizzled in that box, all the things those bits and colors could end up being, was a heady and magnetic thing.

I felt greedy, covetous. I wanted those beads–not to make anything, or to have the result (although I wouldn’t have said no if someone handed me a necklace made from some of them)–but just because I wanted to hold onto the possibilities. I wanted those futures to be mine.

I also feel that covetousness when I come across what seems to be a treasure trove of first and last names: cemeteries, old school email forwards with three million people’s names on it (especially the kind where they add their names to the very long list), a junk mail folder full of random real-sounding names.

Bold, vibrant old or arty pictures bring it out of me as well: the kind of photo where you feel like you could sink into the world that’s being depicted, or the kind that seems larger than life. Like the person in it has a story which is practically telling itself through the photo.

I wonder, what is this drive in me that wants to possess potentials? I don’t seem to care about capturing the information attached. I just want to have, to own, to control, something that shimmers with its own, un-stealable, distinct flavour of possibility.

Anyone else do this?


2 thoughts on “Possibility

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