Sunday, May 9, 2010

objects in mirror...

...are closer than they appear

W.C. Fields, in the funniest movie ever made, It’s A Gift, attempts to shave peering at the distorted reflection in the bottom of a can after his teenage daughter shanghais the bathroom mirror. At one point he turns his head from the blurry reflection only to see his right hand with razor floating way behind him. It is an absolute hysterical sequence.

But the mind’s eye just does that to us from time to time without mirrors.
Distortion, that is. Especially when we attempt to look at Life too closely I guess. Was that woman in the car in front of me with the special ‘Save The Children’ license plate really slapping her wailing child in the back seat? Was that police officer approaching me, getting closer and closer in my side view mirror, holding a ticket book and pencil in his left black gloved hand, going to award me with a Good Driver Citation? Was my Hispanic ex-next door neighbor’s little girl crying silently, clutching a little doll to her chest as her evicted mother dragged a stuffed, battered, samsonite suitcase along the sidewalk? Can’t be; two of the sweetest people I ever knew. Stop peeking through the narrow blinds now.

Down on one knee struggling to loosen a lug nut on a flat tire along a desolate county road trying to get back home, right about now we’d be sipping coffee on the back stoop, looking over my shoulder from time to time, was that wolf in my headlights earlier as huge as I perceived it to be? Is that breathing mine? They can easily clamp clean through a human arm I‘ve heard; like butter. I grip the crowbar tighter now. The breathing is a white-tail at the other wheel, watching me, sprinting away when I say hey there.

Soft green grass pillowing our heads, just how far away is that white cloud the shape of a beautiful woman reclining sensually, posing for a painter’s brush in the dusk sky east of Venus? You tell me it’s not a woman; up on your elbows now squinting, you say matter-of-factly, no, silly man, it’s a 1954 Schwinn bicycle with white wall tires, and I tell you glasses are in your future, mostly because you know how I feel about a woman with gentle soulful blue-gray eyes wearing glasses.


Blogger Helen said...

Nothing is ever as it appears to be! I loved this ......

5/09/2010 9:02 PM  
Blogger Melinda Owens said...

Love this...especially the last line. Great take on the photo. Poetic prose, unique.

5/09/2010 11:35 PM  
Blogger joanny said...


Another beautiful tale you tell -- another vote for -- I loved this piece too.


5/10/2010 4:52 AM  
Blogger lucychili said...

powerful images throughout

5/10/2010 7:31 AM  
Blogger sheri... said...

this magpie is nothing short of amazing! i loved the feeling of being sucked into your world, loved the ease in which you write your every word. magnificent!

5/10/2010 8:04 AM  
Blogger Brian Miller said...

a wonderfu piece...what we percieve is not always as it is, or should pull us in so gently...nice magpie!

5/10/2010 8:58 AM  
Blogger The Bug said...

I think I could read your stuff all day. Got any books written?

5/10/2010 10:37 AM  
Blogger willow said...

((Sigh)) Phil, I could go on reading you forever. xx

5/10/2010 11:44 AM  
Blogger Catalyst said...

Phil, that was breathtaking!

5/10/2010 12:44 PM  
Blogger Lyn said...

Poetry all the way..a lovely stream of consciousness...

5/10/2010 7:48 PM  
Blogger Tumblewords: said...

How lovely the questions and reality in this piece, wonderful read.

5/10/2010 11:13 PM  
Blogger Jingle said...

inspiring tale,
Happy Tuesday!

5/11/2010 9:18 AM  
Blogger ~T~ said...

Lovely, and so true.

5/11/2010 7:01 PM  

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