This past weekend was blessed with warmth and sunshine on the little corner of earth we occupy. Everything popped. The trees are green again. Flowers are in blossom. Birds have returned from their migration, and all is alive and awakened from winter slumber. The beauty is stunning. For those of us who live with long, dark and cold winters, this is a time of rebirth. In this spirit, it seemed fitting to share the following piece of romantic writing. Titled “Like One Reborn,” it was written by Alline George and published in the April 1934 edition of The Nudist magazine.
While not explicitly about springtime, her work captures beautifully the transformative power of Nature. Her experience stripping away the artifices of manufactured society and opening herself to the evocative beauty of the natural world illustrate how Naturism can enable one to experience the rapture of being alive and feeling free. It is clear Alline George got the magic and was inspired.
You may note that she uses the word “man” a few times in the piece. To be clear for gender sensitive readers, these are references to humankind not to the male gender. Enjoy.
“Maybe I am a trifle mad, born as I was twenty-five percent human, seventy-five percent elemental, being forced to exist in a most complex man-arranged world, surrounded by man-opinionated people for eons and ages, then suddenly, with no mental preparation, to be allowed to GO HOME, home to an island filled with dim thickets, dew laden grass, and filtered moonlight that was ever trying to catch the shadows that stole out as dusk deepened; an island where soft singing pines nodded to white bodied birch trees that stood barefoot on a carpet of soft moss and fragrant needles. Around this Father Neptune had poured his choicest vintage of cold intoxicating lake water, and so silently had it come that not a stone or leaf had rippled enough to disturb the fair landscape at the bottom of the lake.
To this enchanted spot, overarched with a sky emblazoned with stars, I came like a homesick child. My half mad mate in his sensitivities to my starved soul had called forth the mystic elements, fire and a huge light and the warmth reached out across the water and drew me in.
In the clear, keen night air that called for coats in that far-away man country, I suddenly flung all clothing aside and all white and nude and joyous, I rushed over the dewy carpet of needles into the dim forest and there for a moment I stood tiptoe, stretching out my arms to the white bodied birch trees, with whom I felt a sisterhood, and then slipped into the silken folds of the water, and so quietly that there was no sound save the murmuring lullaby of the waves as they received me into their arms. While I lay there in the cool embrace of the lake gazing up into the midst of whatever gods there be – I recognized my oneness with it all.
Suddenly back onto the shore, wrapped about with the soft breezes, drops of clear crystal dripping from my body, silhouetted in the glowing flame, I, standing on the cool earth with Nature’s three mystics, air, fire and water, in attendance, let all conscious thought leave me and went wholly mad, or all earthly madness left me and there stripped to life, I was for once, sane. Throwing open my arms to the all of everything, and crying out in a wild pagan call, sinking on to the magnetic earth and looking up with a cleared vision, I knew I had come to my heritage. Never again could I be a cringing slave, for I had felt the majesty of life.” 1
1 Alline George, “Like One Reborn,” The Nudist, April 1934, Vol. III #4, p. 23.