Nature’s Complexity

Hanauma Bay, on the south shore of the island of Oahu, Hawaii, is an extinct volcano crater that has since been filled by the Pacific Ocean. The crater is now a federal fish preserve home to over 450 species of fish many of which are natural only to the Hawaiian Islands.  As one looks down upon this phenomenal bay from high above the wind swept blackened volcanic cliffs, through the clear, clean tropical hues of the protected lagoon, one can witness a spectacle of nature rarely seen in our northern waters.  Hundreds of schools of fish – some large, some smaller – colorful as a rainbow’s pallet after a late noon’s shower – swim to and fro – and up and down, they twist and turn at every nuance of nature’s sound – these schools of fish dance as one incredible formation of pattern and song.

As a lone snorkeler enters the warm, protected water, an amazing event occurs. These schools disperse in all directions, as if summer’s siren announcing another school year completed. Dispersal commencement – darting here and there, some fast then slow – the individual fish as if panicked and scared move chaotically in undefined yet seemingly random patterns – laid bare.

Yet as quickly as they disperse they form again.  Disperse, then form again – and again and again and again – a natural lifecycle – eternal, repetitive, monotonous, beautiful and magical

Could it be

A small, insignificant marginal occurrence

Having dramatic results downstream?

Like a butterfly in Kansas, fluttering in continuous motion

Its innocent natural presence sets the air in rotation.

The air around it becomes unsettled

And drifts and lifts and moves in a complex fashion

With humidity and heat, the air it rises

In cumulus form it passes

And drifts to storm clouds over the distant horizon

And with power and thrust, it grows and grows

Into a chaotic fashion of explosive energy

Funneling up for no apparent reason

That initial innocence is now mature

And a thundering, destructive, emergent passion.

(c) ShakeyJay 2003