Sunday, July 08, 2012

The Face

We were packing up from the Upper Arlington 4th of July parade when this man started pointing at Lia. Lia shook her head. She didn't understand, beside the fact that the man was unable to speak. 

He touches her arm. He points to her camera. It is then I stop trash collecting and begin to watch. 

Lia nods. She lifts the camera and holds it up to the man - this frail, thin, hunched and carrying a limp stranger - she checks to see if this is actually what he wants. 

He smiles toothless. He takes two steps back. He poses. Lia takes the shot. 

The man bows as if to say thank you. He disappears in the crowd. 

Lia and I look at each other. "What was that?" she asks. "I don't know, but I can't wait to see the picture," I answer. 

Looking at it now, I don't know exactly what to think about it. Other than it brings me to tears. It's beautiful. This man's face. I don't know how to describe it. His eyes firm like earth, warm like amber honey, strong like polished river stone. They cannot be contained by the screen. They come at me. They draw me in. I love his eyes. I love his face. The wrinkles. The big one curved like Half Dome, curled like a bent reed. There is a ladder of wrinkles rising above that deep one. Like ripples. Like heat waves. Rising on his dark face. His wizened face. I like that word. Wizened. Toothless man. He has a big nose. He has a W of a chin. A double-U. He has apple cores for cheeks. He reminds me of Jesus. Of what Mother Teresa said, how "the dying, the cripple, the mental, the unwanted, the unloved they are Jesus in disguise." Is that who you are, beautiful man? Is that what you are trying to say to us? Is that what you wished my wife to capture? the face of Christ?  

to read an amazing interview of Mother Teresa go here:

1 comment:

Jen said...

Beautiful, nedder...