Beauty Extends (Poem by Julia Layman circa 2002)
but there is nothing within.
We see nothing beyond our faces.
We've become hollow cups,
decorated in jewels and painted like fine china.
So we place ourselves on high ornate shelves.
Where we cannot be hurt,
nor can we serve.
For we are too easily chipped and too easily offended.
An empty crystal glass is beautiful
but will not save from thirst.
When we find ourselves in the desert,
we will long for the steady wooden saucers
filled to the brim with water.
What will we do when those saucers are gone?
When we've all hardened our hearts into crystal?
Swallows us up.We wrap it around us so tight we practically disappear.
we cover our chips, and cracks, and wrinkles.
And we think beauty is only in the fixed.
That beauty can only be found in the new.
Never realizing the value of the chips.
Never seeing the beauty in the cracks.
Like super-glueing arms on the Venus de Milo.
It takes over our lives.
We've forgotten what our lives are for.
We've forgotten who gave them to us.
We recreate ourselves in our own image.
Working from the outside in.
Rushed sense of perfection.
Our world crumbles in the tests of the desert.
It extends too quickly
and is broken off.
Happiness is just a shelf up.
We stretch to reach.
Happiness is just a size down.
We pour ourselves out trying to fit among the
crystal we see on the post-cards, on the billboards, in our mind.
We've forgotten the value of water,
of inner beauty, of self.
A false sense of beauty,
a rising thirst.
Where the shallow drink last
and the steady drink first.
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