Monday, October 22, 2007

Self-Portrait

What was important never is when you’re standing in front of an ill-lit mirror, trying to get your nose just right using broken graphite, the first time in a long time you really looked at your nose at all, you think, and you have to draw it because your art teacher said we’re going into portraiture and you wished to draw someone else, clandestine, but you were scared to start, scared to not finish, if that someone else, whom you did not know, turned to you and then away from you.

There is a glance between two people who do not know each other, a moment of invasion and of topical knowing that is private, rare, by the rest of the world’s standards. Maybe in a supermarket, maybe briefly at a red light, maybe years and nothing like it at all. But here, it’s every day, multiple times, and here people do not even try to avert their eyes, they stare, you stare back, you both go on for subway stops, steps, eons like this, and you see everything and say nothing, even though you could have stepped forward and introduced yourself. Even though you could have approached them, like the new kid on the block forced to ring doorbells and ask if any kids reside inside, you could have done this, you could have made a connection and yet you did not. You will not. And they will not approach you in return.

What you do get though is that moment from your perspective, whatever it is worth, which is probably nothing, until you are standing in front of yourself, tearing up another page because it does not look like how you think you do and you see how you look to someone else, maybe everyone else and it amazes you how small you still are, and yet how much bigger you have yet to grow.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

soul searching.

i like it.

Chatel said...

Ahh....welcome to New York. Sometimes I feel this type of experience is the best way to describe this place...

Ha Ha Sound said...

You summed it up perfectly with that last sentence there. It's an ongoing, never ending process...

Anonymous said...

I used to stand before the hall mirror in, as you say, the light of a single bulb ceiling fixture casting down and try to look into my eyes and see myself seeing myself. And if you stare long enough and hard enough, you can begin to doubt reality and existence.*

--Taupey

*When you are like, twelve, and just discovered "cogito ergo sum" and have yet to discover chemical enhancements to mental gymnastics.

Mag said...

Loved this post, know exactly what you mean :)