For all that I am and all that I can bring her,
I cannot get myself through to her,
For Love has hidden the truth of all that I am,
From the heart I desire, without giving a damn.
In between her eyes and her mind,
Love has placed its infamous blind,
So now she only has her eyes to judge a man,
And with them, she must do the best that she can.
But her eyes alone cannot resolve my finer details,
And I just end up lost among all the other males.
To her, I am merely…
Another leaf in the forest,
Hidden in the shadows beneath its canopy,
Or perhaps a snowflake in the blizzard,
Lost in the storm’s raging fury,
A sprinkle of water in the waterfall,
Mixed into a breath-taking spray,
The drop of poison mixed into the wine,
Its presence known in the mind of its inducer only,
A second in the evolution of time,
Amongst who can know or imagine how many,
Just another speck of light in the night sky,
Blended into the heavenly light show’s ecstasy,
The contour lines in her featureless shadow,
Tracing the fringes dividing the surfaces it falls upon,
The lines that divides the rainbow’s colour bands,
Amidst the glorious magnificence of its beauty,
The meaning not written out to be read,
Between the lines of a good story…
Her eyes, though, cannot notice these things…
But in her mind, when she comes to think of me,
She sees all but what her eyes wants to see.
In her heart and in her mind she cannot deny,
That all I say I can give her is not a lie.
She knows I am a part of all that surrounds her,
But she can’t admit that looks are all she is after.
Her depth forbids her from judging books by their covers,
But Love has forced her to rely on looks to judge her lovers.
So whilst she stands to watch for a nice face and body,
I can but stand and watch her in agony.
Be careful where you aim your bow,
And especially careful where you shoot your arrows,
For it isn’t morally correct to shoot a blind woman,
Be you anything but less than human!
02.05.94 – 03.14.94
Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion.
Notes to this poem…
Well, I definitely raised my eyebrows seeing this poem again, though not because I thought it remarkable or anything. No, I remembered discarding this poem for self-publication in Perspectives because despite really liking the imagery in the poem, I thought it was long enough without merit otherwise to just be a waste of paper. Seeing it again hasn’t changed my mind, but the jaded tone definitely raised the eyebrows to see how frustrated I was at the time. Frustrated, not angry, two different things. The former is just with myself. The latter is with the world in the way it’s used. I wasn’t angry at the subject, which was not anyone in particular because I have original notes to prove it. The comment about Cupid to symbolize some force of love or evolution or whatever you want to call it validates my blame to be other than the subject. However, th view expressed of how I saw some young women perceived me was not an isolated case, either.
At the time, I was a chemistry nerd who did very little exercise and was in the low 90 lbs range for weight naturally. I might not have been much to look at, but any way you measure a person, I still had a lot to offer as a package, even if a lot of it might still have been potential but so was everyone else except those who didn’t have more, in which case it begged the question why would you commit to someone who has generally maxxed out in their potential with so much of life to go? And don’t talk to me about youth meaning undeveloped potential and such, I saw enough 20 somethings around me who were not going to become much more there and then that I can now validate with the passage of time that it was just frustrating wanting to ask some of the young women around me if they couldn’t tell. But whatever. This much I’ll say, though, it’s through incidents like that which builds self-confidence in my ability to have insight and foresight about the world and its people, say whatever else you might want to say about me, my personality, social interactions and what not.
Some dozen years later now, I’ve successfully fixed my physical weakness with 20 marathons under my belt and being one of the faster runners and marathoners in the province. Note that when I attack myself on my weaknesses and do something about it, I really do something about it, be that running marathons to solve physical weakness or doing amateur stand-up comedy like I did in Vancouver because I acknowledged to myself that I didn’t have much of a sense of humour. Yet, despite those patches I’ve made to my being, I don’t feel some people treat me or see me any differently, but that’s fine since I never did it for anybody. Ultimately, I had to live with myself and I did what I did so I could.
Seeing the words I just wrote now and comparing them to the ones in the poem which raised my eyebrows, I see I still have a lot of that jade left in me, just maybe in a different way. Whatever they jade, at least it’s not my vision nor my heart because I am a lot happier and I see the world a lot more positively now and then. Maybe it is good, after all, I waited till all this time to write notes on these poems cause had I written them then, the notes for this poem might not have been very pretty to read.
One of my main mantras in life is a quote I made up from a smaller one…
“The best thing you can give someone, including yourself, is a chance”.
I’ve given lots of people chances over the years. I have definitely given myself chances because many of the things I’m good at these days, I was not very promising at all when I started. However, I’m still waiting for someone out there to really give me a chance.