by Lee Wimberly
Photo by Jerry Gay, published in “Seeing Reality.
I “see” you, pictured by the window,
wheelchair-bound, neck stretched and smiling.
But do I see YOUR picture?
I “see” you, a gift given by light entering window,
softened by curtain-filters to lightly paint your face,
With illumination my near-sighted and
light-ray limited orbs so demand.
So they can surface connect,
fulfilling their separation-saturating role.
That I might recognize your surface, but get not a glimpse of your soul.
Yet I sense so much more than the shades of gray
given me by photographer and binding and book and paper.
How reach you out to me from flattened surface;
past eyes and nerves and brain and self-imposed words?
Past veins and arteries, through blood, past muscle,
to mysteriously move my very heart and Essence?
Let Us not, you and me and listener and onlooker,
remain caught at the superficial veneer we hide
behind to protect that fragile, self-absorbed ego.
But let us instead stand up from our wheel-chair prisons
to reach ahead of separating time and past distancing space.
Let us bask in warm glow of your projected joy,
to go beyond your camera-captured “now.”
Share with us your vibrant spirit and teach us your unspoken,
heart-earned life-lessons in the non-terms of Unifying Spirit.
Let us reach out and touch each other in ways
only understood by Creator. Let the Us we are
collapse the space-time and camera-filtering chasm
that disconnect us and go beyond our limited knowing,
to experience not that which splits us, and deceives us to be
single threads, but instead to comprehend the interwoven strands of
God-space and God-time and God-universe.
And may we gaze past that which we so easily label reality,
to experience and know the Divine.
Background: The poem “Woman by the Window” is my response to Jerry Gay’s photo, which I in turn became familiar with because of Jerry’s photography book “Seeing Reality.”
The picture and photo gives expression to the existential elements behind “Exploring the Gap between Science and Religion.”