Standing at the stern of the ferry, I look out at the seemingly infinite depth of the Aegean. Taking cues from the wind, the invincible ocean dances calmly yet furiously beneath the boat. As though gasping for air, the waves rise and fall and crash into one another. When I first encountered this ferry, I remember thinking that it was the biggest thing I had ever seen. But as I watched the endless expanse of blue pass by, I couldn’t help but feel small and completely insignificant…
“[…] There occurred violent earthquakes and floods; and in a single day and night of misfortune all your warlike men in a body sank into the earth, and the island of Atlantis in like manner disappeared in the depths of the sea.”
In Critias and Timaeus, Plato tells the tale of a utopia devoured by the sea and never seen again. Many are familiar with the myth of Atlantis and most know it to be just that: a fable for the children, a simple story to spark the imagination. But I refuse to believe that. Though there is very little physical evidence to support Atlantis’ existence, there are a few lines in Plato’s dialog that make a convincing argument.
Layer upon layer of history, tragedy, and misfortune built up every wall that ascended as we hiked deeper into Cape Plaka on Friday (3 June). Each wall, exposed and vulnerable, waits for someone to hear the stories inscribed in every grain. As I gaze up at the colossal remnants of the countless catastrophes that took place here, I am no longer in my body. I can see history being made before my eyes, eruption after eruption, construction and erosion, life and death. Every layer is an event. I feel my feet slip on the loose rock beneath me and I snap back to 2016. Continue reading “Look Closely: Every Layer is an Event”