eyes like flashlights.

inspiration surrounds you, open your eyes...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Wonder(ful) Years

We walked through the doorway of our Uncles new(old) home, and though I’d never been there before I was flooded with feelings of calm and familiarity. The first thing I noticed was the expansive(cozy) living room flanked in ivory paint. The warm(cool) cream colored functional furniture filled the room with life, and tucked behind the large sofa was a stairway creeping up all the way back towards my childhood.

First things first, I did not dare conquer the second flight without first exploring its foundation, although I found my eyes wandering up with curiosity and excitement. I began the inaugural dance, glance by glance from room to room. The kitchen seemed to cling on to the vestiges of its youth and filled my eyes with visions of its former inhabitants. What was once a stylish kitchen for its time, is now only a misunderstood skeleton of a former life. The cabinet knobs with inlaid paintings of tulips in colors so faint, and above the windows were carved wood borders so quaint I just had to appreciate. I basked in the vintage feel of the room, wondering why homes are not built this way any longer. Though its corners and walls were clearly many years of age, the home showed no real evidence of grit and seemed to have only absorbed the lives which passed through it.

And I felt it emanate through the walls, and breathed it in like a sponge.

To the second floor! My eyes floated above scampering feet to greet the next level. With soft cushion-y(firm) carpet nestled between my toes, my heart was aflutter. Which way? In love with the feeling of new(old)ness and not knowing where anything was, who’s room is this?


In the smallest bedroom with angled misshapen ceilings, shelves and drawers built directly into its walls and more nooks and crannies than an... I saw my younger self curled up into one of its crevices. Inventing games, poems, and stories about the real purpose of each slant of the roof and every minute detail of the space. But the real treasure was hidden inside one of the closets. As if an ordinary closet did not encase enough curiosity for a child’s imagination, a brave soul once ventured forth beyond the hanging garments, toward the darkness and revealed another door! A place all to yourself, any child’s(adult’s) dream.

With my eyes open wide like flashlights I examined the simple(complex) wooden door. Not too small and not very tall, just low enough that you’d have to crouch slightly to enter. No doubt the secret entrance to an ultra secret universe where I was a Princess with access to all the Barbie dolls and jaw breakers my heart could conjure. Or maybe it was the gateway to a magic fantasy land where rivers overflowed with chocolate milk and I floated along on a giant marshmallow flaunting a jellybean encrusted candy cane baton. I was all too enamored by the limitless possibility behind that small door and I was no longer looking at my young self in the corner, I became her. And it was a welcomed(welcomed) reunion.

For in that moment, I was catapulted back to the times when things were exactly what they seemed to be, untainted by the cunning of the world that surrounded. A time when every tile in the bathroom, and every pattern in the carpet held infinite prospect for my fibrillating imagination. The lines between the tiles became a road map to a secret treasure, and the squares on the fiery red carpet were islands floating atop scorching lava, so you’d better be careful not to slip between. When the mirror was much more than a reflecting glass, but the evil abode of an elusive Bloody Mary. The years when everything around me held and radiated awe.

I stood melting into the dreams of my youth while composing new ones of a childhood I might have had if I spent it within these walls. Thawed out by the warmth of this home I was brought back(returned) to the years of wonder.

So, remember.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

From Nothing

In the long quiet hours that I find myself imparting life from my life into my new little babe, I am given many moments to enjoy the silence of night. It is as if it is just her and I in the entire world. Quiet.

Outside my window I look for inspiration, but I find that I’m holding it instead. Looking through the window all I am returned with is the shallow wind whispering to her slumbering neighbors, that yes... the world is still here awaiting you when you open your eyes. The leaves quiver in response. The lights turn on and off on the street as if unnoticed, muttering its own language as the lights turn on and off through the windows in return.

Her eyes open and close and and pierce my heart with each movement and the anticipation of each movement. My entire world is curled up in a ball right before me, now my life is suddenly made more important through hers. As I sit and watch her fluttering eyelashes, like the folding back of petals in the sun, I cannot help but be completely and utterly lost in the idea that this life emerged from nothing. My human mind may perhaps never be equipped to understand the concept, and I pray it never does because maybe in that moment I might find that life has lost its meaning.

Feeling her touch, I struggle to accept the fact that she is indeed real. A real living breathing little version of me that didn’t exist before. She is the embodiment of love, and my heart swells with the thought, ‘if love was a person...’ The petals of her face fold back revealing a beautiful perfect piece of me, the best part of me and the best part of her father. Her arms reach out to me, and with her eyes closed tight, I know they will find me. In the darkness of night, she will reach out to find that I am there with her. Always.

And my own reflection deceives me. Who is this woman?

As I catch the image of my face in the mirror as I walk passed, I had to take a pause. Who was she, holding a baby girl no less. How quickly can your world change, my eyes will take more time to adjust to this new reflection. You can walk through life and never really see yourself. It was as if I was looking at someone else holding their child so close and I realize that this person also came from nothing. From absolute nothingness into absolute and utter living breathing thinking loving trusting real-ness. I was seeing my new self for the very first time. In an instant. And it will take much more than an instant to ever attempt to understand the temporary permanence of it all.

And into nothing, we shall all return.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

A Day Exactly Like Another

The emergency medical team transported her body out of the deafening cafeteria on a stretcher rolling her from Queens to infinity. She’s dead, could she be? And the shock was evidently reciprocating between two individuals. Two individuals out of the crowded arena of onlookers, yet it was only us that saw.

I was not surprised. It was not surprising to me that a person could literally die, terminate, cease to be, stop living, and observers can go on to finish their hearty meals. Laughter, and boisterous jokes continued to sprinkle the air with lightness despite the obvious gravity of the moment. A paradoxical display of two extremes, and I could not decipher which feeling was real. Was she dead? Could it be so?

I was questioning her viability; rather I should have questioned her callous audience. Could we really be so detached that a person dying in front of our eyes cannot shake our hypnotic infatuation with ourselves? Perhaps she was dead, and even in her death she could not distract for a moment the people around her. The same people that found much to engaging their slice of pizza to share that indulgent instant with another human experience. Imbibed by their bubbling caffeinated beverages, was it too much work to shift their gaze for a seconds time to something other than themselves? So alluring it must be to get lost in ones own vanity.

It was a dark moment magnified by man’s seduction with oneself.

It was a chilly February afternoon, cold for more reasons than the weather. I found their icy stares, and hollow smiles reflecting the chilling reality of our plight. I could not grasp the concept, and struggled to shake the feelings of despondence. After all, my eyes were open to the tragedy. The devastation became less about the life lost, and more about our dead hearts. It was apparent to me that the crowd had so relentlessly distanced themselves from the possibility of death, that they were rendered incapable of even acknowledging it when they saw it. Even death could not distinguish this day from any other for them; it was a day exactly like the others.

Perhaps she was not dead, or maybe she wasn’t there at all. Perchance the girl just fainted, I hope so. Dead or alive, it is about time we reacquainted ourselves with the inevitability of death, the one certainty that humanity can agree on.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

In These Late Hours.

There is an almost magical transition that occurs every single day here in New York. It is an event that persists as a reliable constant, and generously adorns her worthy denizens with comfort and tranquility. It is one of the few things that we can rely on, in this world of uncontrollable providence. This one unifying thread sews together the boxes of your calendar, and irrevocably ties us all close, if we are willing to be held.

Too frequently it is carelessly overlooked despite its purposeful perfection. This thread is of course nothing other than the timely conversion of day into night. This meaningful exchange awaits appreciation, visible only to live hearts and eyes wide like flashlights. Every single day in dependable orthodoxy and calculated precision, the day succumbs to darkness and likewise the same acquiescent day ironically cleaves the night with day break.

On this particular day, I spent many moments in noisy contemplation over this outwardly serendipitous barter. Listening to the conversations between this ink in my ballpoint pen and paper, deciphering the profound distance between my fingertips and these lettered keys. Indulge me for this moment, in my personification of the day, and her night. The many layered miracle of this alteration is as much about the brightness of the sun as it is about the dimness of night. It is so much about the thin filamentous dawn that exchanges her robe for the heavy armor of evening. It is with sublime elegance, yet mechanical veracity that the day agrees to alternate with night. The day was like a tangible quality that silently assumed an existence of her own that must not be adulterated with reality. A day is not a thing to be seen, but felt.

So feel.

She hovers over us, consuming all admiration, while we plan our schedules over her. No matter how radiant the day, full of action and possibility, she would subtly fade into the landscape if not for her night existing to distinguish her. Like the deep blanket blackness that drapes above us, allowing only the sharp pointillist stars to pierce through, the day is rendered outstanding by the night.

This dynamic metamorphosis surrounds us, unobtrusively. It is a quiet understanding that leaves our eyes callously unaware of the transfer altogether. Surely there would be nothing to distinguish the day without her matching night to set her alight. The essence of her splendor is revealed in these late hours, when the night covers her celebrity. He covers her out of love and mercy for a short period so that she may emerge and collect appreciations. She indulges in the episode, knowing that it is because of her brief capture that they may be aware. A day is just another day without her night defining it as such.

In these late hours she nestles into the night taking comfort in his overwhelming presence, because for certain it is in these late hours…

…that she’s made bright.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Carousel #7

“…Your bags may be retrieved from carousel #7”

She heard the instructions saturate the air with urgency. The woman’s distant voice floated between each one of their disengaged expressions and they effectively knew just what to do in order to find what they were looking for. They knew they’d find it on ‘Carousel #7’

Slowly revolving luggage bags proudly flaunt their wears with excruciating monotony.

“That looks like mine, wait no…”

the bag slides directly in front of you as your eyes follow while it moves away.

“…that’s not it.”

And how, all your heart longs for, is to find it. To find your bag, because you are certain that it is there, circulating and waiting to be found. And to be found by you. So you keep watching, searching and hoping.

Your bag is absolutely there, somewhere in that cluttered collage. Drifting, you have carried this bag before, and his purpose is to be found. Because every bag has only one true owner, with its contents stored only for her to enjoy. She waited, and watched as the unclaimed bags continued to pass her by, but she did not want them although they called for her. She’d wait.

Her eyes covering each article like a blanket, she found old bags, new bags, BIG bags and small bags. The newer, unworn bags sparked like fiery diamonds around the dingy carousel. Sometimes, they’d find their bags two at the same time. As if the two bags were quietly intertwined, inextricable from one another. She waited on the borders, careful not become impatient and cross. She was watching, looking and hoping.

Until finally, the brilliant ray she had been waiting for twinkled around the corner towards her. It was moving steadily in her direction, in a determined path. Too slowly. She could not wait to lift it up, and bring it away with her no matter how heavy the load. She had found him and could not wait to pick him up…

And carry him home.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

1,281,600 seconds from the Sun

14 hours to Kuwait, 2 hours in the airport and then 7 hours to Bangladesh. And I can only count the seconds till my return. The clouds have already placed themselves between my eyes. And I'm not so good at math. And one second is one second too long. And one inch is one inch too far. And ...

Oh so many 'and's' !! And, I'll be back before you know :)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Spaces Between Darkness, and Light.

Darkness crept in. It swallowed all things like an angry spider, and it was hard to wake up. It was hard to find a reason through the dark tunnels that carved me away. I looked around, only to find no return from the shallow eyes that stared back. So I looked away with a melancholy muffled by the hollow railway sparks. The air was heavy with inhospitality.

And like two subway cars that merge to ride side by side for a time then inevitably part, so too was my heart with this sadness. But I feared the convergence was too intimate an encounter, because sadness is a stranger. I found myself somewhere in between the two cars, two thoughts, two emotions. Teetering on the narrow tracks that connect the dark places to the light, the spaces between expand until the darkness was just a memory, and the light a familiar Shepherd.

I may have been balancing on both sides the two burdensome extremes, with the space between widening beneath my feet and marginalizing both darkness and light. And I was lost in the expanse. The incandescent reason sauntered out before me as my steps became the very first, and the very last. It was because for the first time in weeks I saw the ground before my feet and where it was that I was going. I was furthermore acknowledging these steps for the very last times. Until of course, there was to be something of more importance to espy and replace all the substandard distractions that vie for my attention. I felt an allegiance to that clutter which would soon be removed from the focus of my adoration while they served well to remind me that they too, were worth seeing.

I watched as the leaves twinkled as if sparked by the wind. They summoned my contemplation like an old sweater that longed to be worn. And I put it on. Perchance for the very last time. Out of loyalty. Out of love. Out of reverence of the idea. And though I cosset the infinitesimally insignificant significance of such things, I continued to traverse across the widening gap towards the light which drew me. And now to maintain all loyalties in my periphery, the frames around the new and more becoming landscapes.

Here we are, in this all encompassing gray, in the spaces between the darkness and light. The light a familiar Shepherd and the darkness was a sad stranger. The Shepherd flashes in the distance, but my heels sink through the gray that is reluctant to release. It became undeniably apparent to me just how expansive this space is, and yet we aggrandize our paltry ration of it. The majority of our petite lives are spent floundering within the confines of our own indecipherable clotted gray spaces. Manufactured limitations prevent us from materializing the gray uncertainties into a concrete surface upon which to establish a moderation of themes. Keeping the periphery on the borders of the greater picture, the frames upon which to hang our ultimate goal.

My heels sink as I tread across to a familiar friend.