Daily Prompt: A classic question, revisited: what are the five items you must have on a deserted island?
Foolish me, to think anything I possess would be of value to me on a desert island. Tarzan had no need for his father’s suit or photos of his parents holding him in a loving embrace. Would I want to bring photos, or would the images of loved ones be more vivid without a flat, static, image of them? My mind would conjure the scents and feel of them, but the paper would wither and fade. Perhaps I would be called to use it in the fire, desperate I would be at the mirage one evening of a passing ship. I would burn whatever was handy, and realize once the darkness closed in again that I was more utterly alone.
Would I bring a favorite book, to escape my own mind’s delusions? Would I read and remember the comfort of my childhood bedroom and laugh at the irony of man’s imagination, being sucked up into the belly of a whale. Surely, surrounded by marine life, I would come to see them as friends, perhaps nourishment in the web of all that is connected in the energy of life. Would I have a need for such imaginings? Without these fantastical trappings of civilization, wouldn’t I come into a more complete fullness of being, noticing the life all around me, rather than trampling and ignoring it? Surrounded by the cosmos of the ocean, air and beings and feeling the energy of the moon pulling on the tides, uninterrupted by the sights of cars and buildings, the threat of unnatural violence would fade. I would become a part of the Earth. I would be a field of unlimited energy.
Would I wish I had brought some medicine, some fishing line, a few vials of fresh water so I would not lose my mind, as happened to Pi when he was lost at sea? Did these items help him survive any more than he would have on his own? If I brought a gun would I hunt for food and sustain myself, or turn on that being I call myself, and end my misery?
The castaway learns to survive and eventually perishes, just like the rest of us will do who are surrounded by objects of need and longing. They bring us past or forward, but not in the here and now. So, nah, I wouldn’t bring anything. It’s already there.