Why Must the Past Persist?

Why must the past persist, if this is the present and there is nothing we can do to change what was?
Why do we look back and see what we had when we know full well that there a limitless future ahead of us with so many opportunities just waiting to be seen and pursued?

I have seen these city streets grow and age then fall back down to simple dirt, only to rise again soon and embrace what could be.
I have seen the birds outside fly south in winter seeking rest and respite only to return again in spring when they know that there will be food and shelter from mild storms.
I have watched families come and go from the large house next door, always eager to arrive, but quiet and generally rushed in their departure to find what comes next.

I like to think I am a consistent person. I eat, I sleep, I rise each morning to a life rich with habits and rituals just like any other living being.
When I find myself in quiet hours of the day with nothing to immediately occupy my time I often stare and think of nothing at all, clearing my mind of all that was and is and will be and just being.
I often wonder if I am alone, not only physically but in all of everything that is. I know this is a relatively narcissistic thought, but it is one that haunts me and always has. It is a strange thing to feel empathy, to see yourself in others, but it is stranger still once it becomes second nature and you see yourself in everyone and everything and start to wonder what the difference really is.

I apologize to everyone who feels that my self-expression has changed and is alienated as such; I do not know who I am any better than any of you… I explore myself through these words and sometimes they take me to places I never expected while other times they take me on paths that I know far too well. Just know that I miss and love all of you, so very much.

I have never loved anyone more than I love you. Yes, you. And that is the most simultaneously terrifying and inspiring realization I have ever made. I am anxious and nervous, but I am alive and ready to face whatever comes next knowing that you are by my side.
And now you have finally asked me what I mean when I say this, when I tell you that I love you. I have been waiting for this all my life…
When I say I love you the words fail as they are always want to do. When I say I love you I am taking a feeling that lies deep in my heart, in my soul, and attempting to summarize it with such simple but powerful symbols. I am telling you that I will always be there for you, whatever that might mean, and that I will do so without question, without hesitation, and without any regret. I am telling you that I see you, I see you as you are and as you were and as you will be and in that I see myself but I also see something more, something that helps to assuage the aforementioned fear that I am alone in that I see a strength and a passion and a life that I do not possess and could never hope to. I see a light that is not a reflection like that of the moon I so like to refer to but a light from a source entirely new and different and brimming with potential to bring life that I could never hope to cultivate on my own. When I tell you I love you I am speaking to you without filter, I am singing to you all of the songs I have written down and all of the songs that drift around my hopeless heart from the moment I wake to the moment I finally close my eyes and return to the world of dreams and memories. When I tell you I love you I mean it with the whole of my being, though I do not fully comprehend what that whole is as I only exist in any given moment as a fraction and any attempt to represent myself as anything more is a broad and ambitious reach. When I tell you I love you I want and I need you to believe me because there has never been anything more critical than for you to know that you are loved and that even if you don’t know exactly what it means now you will. When I say I love you it is a promise, a promise that you will know if you are willing to try, a promise that I will never forget you or take for granted all that you are, that I will never seek to change you or shape you or see you for anything more or less than a beautiful and kindred spirit to whom I offer all of my being to be integrated or absorbed but to be shared and cared for and loved. When I tell you I love you, I pray you already know what it means, that you already have in your heart the door to a cavernous room full of the joy and peace and warmth that comes with such a feeling, a door waiting only to be unlocked and opened.

If time is cyclical then we are always at the cusp, riding the wave of omnipotent consumption and re-creation all at once, not unlike a bird that floats effortlessly on the wind then falls with grace to land on a budding springtime branch, only to return again as soon as it is called to flight.

I have written so many times in stream of consciousness and always my words are true but I hope that you who read this understand that this is raw and dirty and unedited, a direct and unformatted view into my thoughts and therefore into my soul. My eyes are gateways but they have membranes just the same; you see now what has not been seen prior.

So yes, the pasts persists, but it does so that the present may exist. We are all standing tall on structures of what was. We can look at those structures and wonder at why they are as they are, or we can stand tall and know why we are here. This piece began on somber thoughts, but as almost everything good in life tends to do it has evolved and transformed and from my melancholy has arisen a passionate expression of self in which every word is a marker of my journey. I hope that you can gleam something, anything, from what I have written and that you understand that having read this you are closer to me than a vast majority of the human population, both those who are in my life and outside. You are an ally, a kin, a friend, a partner in this life. Thank you.

29 thoughts on “Why Must the Past Persist?

          1. I don’t entirely know how it goes and the person isn’t easily available to many. Went from Socrates through to Newton then amended with relativity.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Okay, no worries. If you ever wanted to write a post on this at a future point, I’d love to read it. But I think I might be familiar with the concept, at least in terms of relativity and the definition of self and reality based on past iterations. It’s like light… You can perceive light in a stream, but can never go back and see the same light again because the light has already been experienced and is now a framework for all future light (though you can split light and view it multiple times… Don’t get me started on that…)


  1. All of it just comes down to this one thing, doesn’t it ?
    Biologically, we have an entirely different purpose to be here, but it seems to learn to love is the soul’s true purpose.
    I just started reading Secret Life, and you know the first chapter about how plants reacted to the experimenter’s feelings. I read it in the morning, and I felt so blessed and touched, because it meant every organism could actually reciprocate this one thing- love. It was a universal language. Of course, there may be scientific explanations for all this, but in the end love truly is a magnificent force.
    Something that connects us all, beyond every boundary we may build for ourselves.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, you have spoken great truth here… Love is a bond that we all share, spanning time and space, whether we see it or not.

      I also read that last in mornings; I reread it when I first started my current job, and would read right when I arrived to work to start the day. It always put me in a positive mindset.

      And remember that just because you can explain something scientifically doesn’t meant there isn’t an element of the undefined… Science simply proves process.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is great writing, encapsulating the fact that we are both unique (and therefore alone) and yet merely a tiny cog within nature simultaneously. Our pasts should imform our futures, yet, at least on a global scale, they never do: we need to cling on to those personal connectings which wr feel exist.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Chris. I am not surprised but I am so envigorated by the commentary that has been contributed so far to this post… I am so glad to have all of you and to be blessed with your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Its a great feeling when that profound sense of all encompassiong love for everyone and every thing over flows into our hearts. For me it comes and goes. I do think the past is our connection to a root of some kind but there is another part of us that is the flower, born out of those experiences at times almost crushed by them if they were devestating enough.. and then we make the choice to be present for it all, it rises up and then disappears like clouds or a summer storm. I understand. We are blessed that you are here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Such a true and thoughtful insight… The love comes in waves, like sheets of rain to replenish our thirsty roots, which they themselves are buried in the past. So all of the love and life we absorb comes through the past, filtered and enriched by the layers of sediment/sentiment that have accumulated around us over the years, both good and bad. And over time, those layers erode and are replaced… The hard storms often wash away more than we would like of the past, but provided our roots remain grounded in what is still there, we endure.

      Thank you for your understanding and for being you. I am so grateful to be here and to have you here as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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