So what can we do to connect the idea of wonder to our lives?
I think, if possible, we should ask ourselves this question every morning. Because when Aimee Nezhukumatathil speaks “wonder” in her incredible essay, ‘What Wonder Can Do,’ published at Water-Stone Review, she’s not just speaking to awe or curiosity. “Wonder” is framed as something deeper, more humble, more foundational in this text. Wonder is survival, wonder is a somatic conversation with the natural world, wonder is negative capability.
“It is this way with wonder: it takes a patience and it takes putting yourself in the right place in time. It requires that we are curious enough to suffer the small distractions in order to find the world.”
This essay, like Neruda’s Book of Questions, thrives on multiple—countless—readings. The text will reveal itself to you differently, and each time you might come away with something a little closer to a definition of wonder, but that definition has a missing word, a magical, unknowing word, and that word itself is wonder.