I Can Fly

I can fly

I can fly! (Pixabay)

I spread my wings and jump. The world drops away underneath me, as I catch the breeze and soar. I wheel, wings wide, marvelling at the landscape spread out below, stretching into endless distance.

Birds cry, flying with me, white specks at the corner of my eye. They are the fellows of the air, sharing this effortless moment where all weight disappears. The breeze caresses my face like the gentle fingers of my love.

And I can actually feel this, see it in my mind.

With just a simple, mental flip, I’m something else.

Something tiny. Tasting the world around it, just able to distinguish between light and dark. Sensing salty, sweet, icky and yummy. I turn towards yummy, extending a part of myself, engulfing it. The yummy becomes mine, and my body feels good.

Another flip, and I’m under water, coasting along with gentle sweeps of my flippers. I rise, break through the waves and breathe – first out, then in. I let myself sink back, into the blue, where the sun paints the world in its rays.

And I can sense all this, in my mind.

There are people who cannot.

I found out yesterday that a few percent of humans have a different brain structure that prevents them from holding images in their minds. Any images. It shocked me.

The one thing I have a very hard time imagining is not being able to imagine. I live so much of my life in my mind, after all, creating people, dragons, even whole worlds.

I do this with my mind. I can fly in my mind.

But there are people who cannot. Never could.

There’s a name for it: Aphantasia.

And I don’t know how to feel about that. My mind enters a dead end when I try to. This is unimaginable.

So help me. Comment, if you have any thoughts about this.

About Hannah Steenbock

Hannah Steenbock is an author, dreamer, and coach. She has published several short stories in English and German, as well as one novel in German. In 2013 she started self-publishing her work. In 2014, she has won two awards for her short story "Sequoia".
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