I stepped out of the office and closed the door. As soon as I heard the faint but distinct “clac”, I knew it. I knew they had won, I knew that I was beaten and there was nothing that I or anyone else could do about it. There were no words kind enough or compassionate enough to make me forget about what had just happened. As it turned out, everything that I once took to be my passion, everything that I loved to do and thought that I was good at was nothing but pure illusion. A trick of mind if you will. There was no another way to put it; an illusion. And once you realize that – this fact that, no matter how much of yourself you can invest into something, it will eventually turn down to nothing – what is there to do?
Nothing. There is nothing to do, I thought. So I made my way down the corridor, turned left and went straight ahead. The offices were empty, same-sized boxes that now presented themselves to me as new-age cages, shackles of sorts. I felt emprisonned, or just really sad. One of the two; the distinction was rather difficult to make. I was a bit too old now to be in that position, to be out of everything and just in the need of anything. For some reason, I thought about my friends, my dear old friends, who were, all of them, thriving at what they did and living their dreams, it seemed. I on the other hand, was doing neither. Not anymore. Not that I could have said that I had been living my dream up until now but there was something awfully strange about leaving this place, passing in front of the vending machine where we used to lean against the wall and talk about everything. Nothing really, but just usual casual talk. About life, about jobs, about dreams. And it really felt as if I was connected to something, to some ones, even through something as light as talking about the weather, or how hot coffee was, there was an ambient sense of surrounding that I now felt to be broken inside of me. Something that would probably never grow back again.
Outside, the grass had a different colour – the reflection of the sun and light coming down crashing on the green grass had almost completely turned it yellow. My black shoe on patches of yellowy grass must look like a strangely shaped bee, I thought, and I laughed at this idea. Oh I could get creative, really creative. But that was not what they were looking for, or what anyone was looking for actually. There was nothing but interests on capitals, speculations, pragmatic reasonnings that are more often than not driven by constant searches for power and greed. The will to power, if you will. And although you could think Nietzsche was right, and although I could think that too, there was no denying that I, once again, was out of step. Out of step with the world. I had no ambition, or rather, none that actually mattered to them. All I wanted was to connect with people, talk, write, sing, act, name it. All I wanted was to get them from a metaphorical point A to a metaphorical point B, a tour guide or sorts.
I leaned against the willow in the front garden, watching the empire now behind me. A breathtaking view. I was sure no one could deny that, however badly we can talk about the world we live in, some incredible things have happened everywhere. Incredible, in every sense of the term. And now, everything in the scene made it seem as if I did not have my place in that anymore; I can’t be incredible I thought. Perhaps life is easier, when you’re a tree, I thought, my palm against the willow. But then again, we made nature’s life really difficult over the course of our existence. Perhaps I’m a tree then, for they seem to have made mine really difficult too. I smiled and laughed again; really creative.
You asked me when. That is when. That is the moment I started to call myself Willow, and for some reason it stuck. No matter what happened after that, or no matter how my perspectives changed. No matter how much faith I tried to put into this motto that everything happens for a reason, a motto that, for years and years after it all, I really did try my best to keep believing in, and no matter how much positive I tried to be. There was always that willow in the garden, and I always felt like that Willow.