She lay flat. Her body pressed tightly to the ground. Taught and ready, she was waiting for her sister stumbling unaware towards her. When the distance narrowed, the coiled energy unleashed itself into an explosive ball of fur and muscle. Eyes narrowed forward, ears pinned down, the wind streamed down her back and off the end of her tail. She could see the ‘prey‘ turning slowly and unaware. Her muscles burned to reach the target before it was too late. With clumsy grace, she reached her sister just in time to deliver a firm swat to the head and tackle her to the ground for the fiftieth time that day.
The enthusiasm of youth is contagious. Intangible yet visible, it resonates through every action and everyone young. The enthusiasm of youth is innocent. Truthful and transparent, it is an honest glimpse into individual happiness. These lion cubs are the best example of this animated enjoyment of childhood. Unaware and unashamed of their place in the world, they will soon leave juvenescence into something which is far more edgier, sharper and seasoned.
Like day turning into night, their loss of innocence will be seamless and smooth. Neither a set point nor a particular marker, but a gradual hardening of mind, body and soul. Change will be constant until they are no longer cubs.
Everyone in this world is in a constant transition between day and night. Oscillating between the light and dark moments, we may occasionally find the contagious enthusiasm of youth. It might be hidden in the hardened mind, body or souls of today, but it is still there. The childlike curiosity, the feeling of innocence and the inane optimism that the future will always be the same. For some it reminds them of who they are, for others it removes them from what they have become.
Filmed by: Talita Van Wyk and Graeme Marais
Written and Photographed by: Rich Laburn