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somatic.

Friday afternoon I found myself on taking a detour through an office building, and the contrast between the bright sun and skittering sidewalks outside and the sterile immobility inside was striking. The interior was refined, with expensive seating and an immaculately suited staff, and I was struck by the proliferation of hunched bodies, almost literally frozen by the chill of the air conditioner and the pale brightness of the overhead lights. It made me achingly and suddenly aware of my own limbs and skin–with its inadvertent gooseflesh and impulse toward the sun–and I wondered at both how easy it is to ignore the perspective of the larger self of the body, and at what is lost.

Perhaps it is because I think best when I am moving; perhaps this is my bias. Stepping inside this building, though, I could feel my mind retreat, drawing itself in from my fingers and feet to perch high and removed behind my still-adjusting eyes. I was not there for long.

My own body is not one of those with a energetic flywheel: when I am still, I am still. My own body is not the sort to reserve a jittering knee or fidgeting foot for the expenditure of motion. If it were I might not need to shift position so often, or to pace, or to stretch and curl then unfold. Still, I think there something important to changing position. To move is to move–quite literally–one’s perspective. If our bodies are frozen to one point of view, how can our minds see things otherwise? The easiest way to see the world differently is to fashion a pair of stilts, or to crawl on one’s knees. I do not know why adults so easily forget this. It is important, I think, to be in motion. It is important, I think, and at least sometimes, to move.