Saturday, March 29, 2008

use your illusion

I've recently gone to the eye doctor, reconverted to eyeglasses (Penelope ate my last pair, which made me sad, though my new ones are approximately this, the thickish frame, though smaller). My students had begun to ask me why my eyes were so twitchy (Are your contacts bothering you?), which, to me, was a clear indication my tired eyes needed a change, needed that rest, a resignation from the scratching, the rubbing, the popping out dance.

At the optometrist, I mentioned this strange spot that would drift about in my line of vision--not as a result of the contacts, as it would persist without, as I read, as I drove on a sunny day. It is a floater, something we can apparently all expect by the age of forty, and only when I see hundreds should I worry, as this means a blood vessel has burst. A little gray speck that keeps me company, along with other signs of aging. I discovered it will always be with me, and the only way to be rid of it is to remove the eye jelly (I giggled when he said this as I immediately thought: "Out, vile jelly!").

In New Orleans, Amy had the best eyes. She spotted the rabbit, the squirrel, the frog amongst the bracken. My eyes don't catch these things, the little mysteries of the bayou. I am oblivious to my surroundings sometimes, and I wonder how it is that poetry and photography pull at my heartstrings so much when I cannot simply catch the fleeting forest animals.

My husband and I will watch a film, and he'll point out some clever symbolism, some connection of character, and I will cry out Drat! for allowing it to slip by, for his showing me up without realizing he was conquering my territory.

I could huddle with a spyglass, peer out as only an observer of the larger world. I could forget myself, this body, blend into my surroundings. I could be quiet.

We have a love affair with the untruths of life. We are most interested in knowing what we want as opposed to what is verified. I look the other way with my students every day--we must pick our battles, as the cliche goes.

I wish I could know which self makes the most sense. I have tried on so many masks, been so many selves, alternate evenly.

Thinking of recent films: The Illusionist :: The Prestige

Thinking of magic in our everyday lives, what we sift from the bracken.

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