I can sit inside for hours in end and write about this experience. But I'd hate to. The irony in that is the more time I spend writing the less I have to write about. I could write about the lunch I had today... and the Bodleian library card I received last week. But I'd hate to.
Xu Zhim's poem Saying Good-bye to Cambridge Again made clear what it is that I'm experiencing here in Oxford. This is what I took from the poem as a description of my time spent in Oxford. What I see in this should not be confused with me trying to figure out what he meant but what it means to me.
Xu Zhim does not write about the people, he does not write about buildings, he does not write about his studies. He writes about what he sees away from all of that... it's as if he writes about what he sees as the beauty of Cambridge... as if maybe he can't find it in the buildings. Zhim writes about what he remembers.. what most left a mark on him, even though he writes of not making a mark in Cambridge himself.
My time here in Oxford has given me a sense of silence, without family or belonging. There are people to talk to.... but there aren't really people to talk to. Everything I have experienced here in Oxford is amazing, but really how amazing can it get when this isn't your home? And, home to me can be people too, I would much rather have people that felt like home experiencing theses things with me, and that's where I find the silence.
The only way I can understand that is missing someone or something you love. Love is not a dream and a picture perfect sunset, because no one falls into a lasting love underneath a temporary sunset.