Did you ever have one of those toys that was a big glass orb filled with some sort of scene and enclosed in a liquid? You’d shake it up and tiny things would fly around and eventually settle into interesting patterns. Sometimes it was little white things made to look like snow flying around the globe in a wintry scene. Santa could be seen in the hills. Sometimes it was tiny pieces of glitter, and you’d shake it up hard and the glitter pieces would fly all around, shimmering and shining and settling down on to the already-made scene at the base.
Obviously, this was before video games. I loved to shake those orbs up--the bigger, the better. Some of them also included little music boxes in the bottom, so you could play a tune related to the scene inside and watch the little pieces of confetti fly around the globe in the perfect little world in your hands. Believe it or not, this provided great fun for many people in the “old days.” Children still love them, although I don’t think they make many anymore.
|Life in a glass globe.|
Sometimes when I come home with photos and I get a chance to look at them, I get the strangest feeling that I’ve been inside of one of those little glass orbs all along. Maybe it’s just the curvature of the sky or the haziness of the horizon that makes me feel that way. I half expect to see confetti drifting downward. In this photo, I look at all the rocks and pebbles and sand piled up in heaps, placed haphazardly as if they had fallen straight from the sky. And I wonder . . .
Maybe we’re all just in a large glass globe. Maybe a strange and alien being is shaking up his ball and delighting in how things fall, now here, now there. Perhaps our whole world is just a gift to delight the eyes of a simple creature. When he picks up his glass orb, storms appear and rattle the Earth. When he shakes it up, whole continents collide, and civilizations come and go, falling haphazardly out of the sky and landing in a perfect little already-made scene.
And I’m just a piece of confetti, walking along the shore of the glass globe in a world that sometimes seems too terrible or too perfect to be true, depending on how the orb is shaken.