Dispatch from the Razor's Edge, the Blog of Michael Stephen Fuchs
2007.08.23 : Beauty and Wonder

    "I pulled myself down the line that I had rigged, a tangent from the bow of the sub to the top of the conning tower. I hung on the line by my fists, and my body wavered in the current like a flag on a lanyard. As I was pulled along by the sub, the school swam close beside me. I blinked and reminded myself that if I let go of the line, I would be swept away and quite possibly lost forever. In the water, bioluminescent plankton trailed behind the fish like a cacade of stars. It was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my life, and I remember that it was silver above, cobalt beneath, and this vision still recurs in my dreams."
- Chuck Pfarrer, Warrior Soul   (*)

I've come to realise that, aside from all the other things – and there are a lot of other things, most of them more qualifiable and quantifiable – I seem to have lost my senses of beauty and wonder.

I've only remembered the existence of them through music – when listening to a song as beautiful as this one, for instance: I get that very large, and very light, and very expansive feeling in the pit of my stomach, and feel that I could weep, in a nice, cleansing, being-moved-by-great-art kind of way.

And with that reminder of what I used to feel, I realise the feeling has been a stranger for a long time.

Along with all the other things, it occurs to me to wonder how I might regain at least an acquaintanceship with those senses of beauty and wonder – those feelings that are their own proof that life is worth the living.

Poe, Haunted, 2000 (I listened to this album for two months straight once)

  depression     music     joy  
close photo of Michael Stephen Fuchs

Fuchs is the author of the novels The Manuscript and Pandora's Sisters, both published worldwide by Macmillan in hardback, paperback and all e-book formats (and in translation); the D-Boys series of high-tech, high-concept, spec-ops military adventure novels – D-Boys, Counter-Assault, and Close Quarters Battle (coming in 2016); and is co-author, with Glynn James, of the bestselling Arisen series of special-operations military ZA novels. The second nicest thing anyone has ever said about his work was: "Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of 'when in doubt put in a firefight'." (Kirkus Reviews, more here.)

Fuchs was born in New York; schooled in Virginia (UVa); and later emigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lived through the dot-com boom. Subsequently he decamped for an extended period of tramping before finally rocking up in London, where he now makes his home. He does a lot of travel blogging, most recently of some very  long  walks around the British Isles. He's been writing and developing for the web since 1994 and shows no particularly hopeful signs of stopping.

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ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 5 - The Last Raid by Michael Stephen Fuchs
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