The Daily Post Prompt: “Worldly Encounters”
An extraterrestrial asks you to recommend one book, movie, or song that explains what humans are all about. Easy answer: the movie Wings of Desire
Damiel, an angel, perches on buildings that tower over Berlin. Seeing the world only in black and white, he listens to a stream of human thought—hopes, fears dreams. To be with a trapeze artist, he plunges to earth, surrendering immortality. Damiel tastes what it means to be human amid the rich colors, sounds, and textures of the city before the wall fell.
What is it to be human?
What is staying alive? To possess
A great hall inside of a cell.
What is it to know? The same root
Underneath the branches. . . .
What is it to sing? To receive breath
From the genius of creation.
What’s work but humming a song
From wood and wheat. . . .
What is the world to the all powerful?
A circle spinning.
And to the children of the earth?
A cradle rocking.
It seems the film is a heavier treatment of the subject than “City of Angels” which followed much later. Lovely piece. Van
Thanks. Far superior to “City of Angels.” Not so heavy but rather more poignant and artfully done. You would like it!
Fascinating! And thought – provoking for sure. Do you see the circle spinning, or the cradle rocking?
“Circle spinning.” Richard Feynman cues me: “I… a universe of atoms, an atom in the universe.” Did Whitman cross your mind–just the word echo–“out of the cradle endlessly rocking”?