Wednesday, September 8, 2010

5/1000 The Eye of a Beholder

I took his outstretched hand. It was warm and soft and reminded me of touching a small, fragile, sweet baby. I looked him in the eye and gave him a warm smile and told him to have a good day as I got off the bus. As I walked away I wondered what made him want to shake my hand.

A flap of skin, which at some point had tried to grow into an ear, was somewhere between his chin and the back of his neck. His head was over-large and misshapen as though it had lived in a vice for decades. He walked with a swagger made possible by two sharp metal braces. And although his eyes displaced on his face he mastered the art of looking them both in the same direction.

His eyes were soft and gentle. They had seen a lot of this world and beyond. I wonder how many others were willing to meet his gaze?

As an artist I look for the underlying beauty in my world. The flower growing out of a crack in the sidewalk or the majestic sunset are easy scores. But for me, more often than not, beauty is in what others would consider ugly, deformed or obscene.

The dilapidated house on an abandoned lot with peeling paint and a lost history holds a treasure trove of colors and shapes. Like a dead tree in the forest, there is life living just below the surface. An amazing carnival for the senses if one is willing to look.

Yesterday the beauty in the 201 Local was below the surface, I hope I'm not the only one who got to enjoy it.

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