The Light of NOW (ASL Poem)

General information: You may share this video on social media and websites. Watch in high definition. Captions not provided, but read below for keywords and synopsis. The purpose of the synopsis is to provide a basic summary of the poem.

Image description: A white young man is standing in front of a orangish/whitish wall. He is wearing a white T-shirt, grey-ish pants, and a brown belt. He is signing something resembling a person running after a flying object.

Purpose: I translated this poem to remind myself the importance of the present moment. I also wanted to illustrate how ASL can express abstract concepts.

Keywords: now, seize, time flies, treasure, forever, same, look back, dark/obscure, future

Synopsis: In the opening, the speaker exhorts the audience to seize the present moment because time flies. There are several ASL wordplay such as the sign for “same time” to mean “that time literally looks exactly the same” and the sign “fly” is decomposed into two hands, one representing time as a person and the other representing the wings. As the speaker chases after the plane, he/she stumbles upon a treasure chest with the shining NOW. The speaker realizes that every minute is a shining NOW and that forever is composed of shining NOWs despite differences in external appearances. However, the speaker loses track of the present moment and brings memories from the past, which obscures the shining NOW until he/she lets go of the past and the NOW is finally clear (with the other meaning where the clarity comes through to past mysteries). Then, the speaker enjoys the shining NOW down the stream of time until he/she looks forward to some future. The speaker then realizes that is a future NOW, but he/she should focus on the present NOW.

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