October 13, 2016

Writing || Life in Liminality

On being stuck in between.

Liminality is an idea I am quickly becoming obsessed with. It is the concept of a threshold, an in between space that only exists as a throughway to get you from where you've been to where you are going. Liminal spaces are not designed to exist on their own; they would have no context if removed from the position they are in, between two other spaces.

Liminal spaces can be both mental or physical, and I can guarantee that you've occupied both kinds many times in your life. Physical liminal spaces have a very distinct feeling to them, an otherworldly atmosphere where reality appears to be altered. When we linger inside spaces which are made for passing through, our minds begin to try and contextualise them and can't, leading to the uneasy feeling they give us.

Some examples of physical liminal spaces are:

- Fire Escape Staircases
- Parking Lots
- Truck Stops
- Tunnels
- Airport Terminals
- Waiting Rooms
Did visualising that list create a certain feeling in your mind? This is the effect of liminality.

Mental liminal spaces can be harder to explain, they are periods of time where you (or a whole society) exist between the person you have been and the person you will be. You feel no longer like you did and not yet like you will.

I now see the irony of my blog title The Halfway Point; the very definition of a liminal space. 2016 has been an in between year for me, where I have constantly felt not at all like the person I knew myself to be. It's like being trapped on an endless staircase, running up and up and up but never finding an exit; stuck in a place I was only ever meant to be passing through. I think perhaps everyone's early 20's are filled with liminality; where you are no longer as young and naive as your teenage self and yet you do not know enough to feel like an adult. You are suspended somewhere in between borders, living on no man's land.

Understanding this concept has given me something to grab onto in relation to how I've been feeling for this past year. Not completely existing inside reality is terrifying, and though I believe my brain's current disorientation is caused by much more than this, it is comforting to assure myself that I am in an in between. That one day soon I will find the staircase's exit, leave the waiting room, and come flying out the other end of the tunnel. It's all just a matter of time.

October 11, 2016

Poem || This is the Part

this is the part where your world falls to pieces,
the scene where the curtain is drawn,
where the pages that speak of your life fill with creases
and your dreams are all weary and worn.
this is the part where it seems it's all ending,
where the colour is ripped from the skies,
this is the madness before all the mending,
the darkness before the sun's rise.

October 10, 2016

Video || September 2016

September marked 1 year since arriving home from my adventure in the US, so it's fitting that it was filled with adventures of its own: A trip to Melbourne to visit my best friend and moving out. What a month.

(Also: I've started an instagram for photos I take that I want to curate. If you want you can follow them here: instagram.com/wand.erin.gs

~ Erin

October 5, 2016

Brain Dump #1

I think one of the reasons I went on hiatus back in March (how was it so long ago already!?) was that I felt this space had grown into one where everything had to be well curated and visually appealing. I'd unknowingly boxed myself into a place where there wasn't much room to express the messy and incoherent parts of me that were just as important as the one that likes order. So here's an attempt at fixing that: brain dumps. Rambling thoughts or ideas that have occurred to me in the past few turns of time. 

1. Why have all the blogs I used to read seemingly died? I went through and unfollowed all the no longer used blogs I once followed and now I'm left with hardly any. Has blogging started to lose its popularity or is it just losing its popularity with me? Maybe I just have no niche community to fit into.

2. Today I locked myself in my bathroom with a pair of scissors and gave myself a fringe. Whether I'll regret it remains to be seen. I've not had one since that awkward 2008 stage but now it just makes me want to wear hoop earrings and denim jackets. I think I might love it.

3. Today I left the house purely to go and buy a loaf of bread and I think that may be the definition of adulthood.

4. Library's are so underrated. LOOK AT ALL THIS FREE KNOWLEDGE FOR THE TAKING.

5. Even though you can leave a place and you can leave things behind, you still carry all your thoughts with you despite how heavy they are. 

6. I haven't been writing poetry recently. To be honest it just doesn't feel like it's in me anymore. I want to do something new and leave that part of me behind.


September 29, 2016

Writing || Soul Shedding

On where we go when we go.

There's a cemetery not far from where I live now and it's been pulling me towards it since I moved here. There's something so fascinating about those places for me; as soon as I step foot inside of one I can almost hear it humming with the stories of all the names it holds.

There's something else that strikes me though, and I felt it last year also when I visited the grave of Henry David Thoreau. The headstone was worn smooth by many hands and around it lay a collection of pens and pencils laid down by people who'd visited before. They came there seeking to find even a sliver of his soul, and I wonder if they left with the same feeling I did; that the place held nothing more than his bones and a place for the living to go to remember.

You see something occurred to me on that visit, an idea I'd not thought through in much detail before but that I now wholeheartedly believe in: We leave pieces of ourselves in every place we inhabit. In regards to Thoreau I felt his presence most at Walden Pond where he had lived in solitude. Even now, all of us are shedding parts of our soul into the rooms we are sitting in; different amounts for the differing times we spend in each place. We do not lose this part of our soul once we move, instead it is more of an impression, a copy of our soul which is left behind and will exist as long as the place encompassing it does.

I think perhaps it is our duty to travel far and exist deeply. To leave traces of ourselves inside as many places and experiences and people as we can. To collect the souls of as many others as possible, so that in our last breaths the world is both full with us, and we are full with the world.


Do not stand at my grave and weep 
I am not there. I do not sleep. 
I am a thousand winds that blow. 
I am the diamond glints on snow. 
I am the sunlight on ripened grain. 
I am the gentle autumn rain. 
When you awaken in the morning's hush 
I am the swift uplifting rush 
Of quiet birds in circled flight. 
I am the soft stars that shine at night. 
Do not stand at my grave and cry; 
I am not there. I did not die. 

~Mary Elizabeth Fry

September 28, 2016

Writing || The Long Way Round

On the importance of doing things the hard way.

Yesterday I stood on a train platform on my way to visit a shopping center, purely to purchase paper that would allow me to write a letter to my friend who lives in Canada. 

It struck me then how much I enjoy the long way round; consciously taking the time and effort to do something which (lets be honest) could be completed much quicker if I really wanted. I could’ve waited until I was going out anyway to get the paper, in fact I wouldn’t even need paper at all if I just emailed her or messaged her on Facebook. So why choose the hard way at all?

I think we live in a society that teaches us to rush. It’s all about efficiency, efficiency, efficiency! Just sit at a bus stop and watch everyone get fidgety when the bus is 5 minutes late, even though they’re still all going to get to where they’re going on time. It’s a side effect of The Rush; the idea that if we’re not hurtling through the day at full speed then we’re wasting our lives.

Here’s the thing though: have we ever stopped to wonder what we’re rushing towards? What exactly is it that we simply cannot wait to reach?

Everything is so easy these days; we don’t even need to leave our houses to go shopping. We can see our friend’s faces without having to travel anywhere and the ability to have every movie at our fingertips negates the need to visit the cinema.
Maybe I’m cynical, or maybe I just think there’s a great importance in going slow. In walking places, writing letters, visiting libraries. In taking the time to step back from the rush and instead just be perfectly inefficient.