Sunday, June 26, 2005

The Silver Lining

Every cloud has a silver lining. A saving grace of the debacle was that he now had more data about the person that reminded him about love. At least she no longer was confined to a vision distorted by desire and worn by repetition. He had seen her, heard her voice.
The most striking thing about her was her ordinariness. There was nothing specific in her that made her stand out. If he had to describe her to anyone, there was no way he could do that with some unique identifying feature. In fact, he could not describe her. He tried, nevertheless. Caucasian, could be Middle Eastern too. Aged between twenty and thirty, closer to thirty maybe. Nice eyes. Not black. Not grey. Brown? Maybe blue. Tall enough not to be overlooked. Intelligent lips. Girlish voice with a tinge of authority. Sat, stood and walked straight, very straight. There was very little else he could verbalise. Now that he thought of it, there was little else that he remembered. Even of whatever of her he remembered, it kept disintegrating into fragments, shifting, dancing, transient pieces of her. Every time he gathered the pieces into a whole, he ended up with a new persona who he was sure he did not know. His first vision of her was still fresher than his second. After a while, he stopped trying to put the pieces together, and clung to the fragments – an embarrassed smile here, a proud step there.

Poor, poor man. The carefully built mental image is at loggerheads with the visual image of the same woman – and he doesn’t know whose side to take.