Thursday, 9 April 2009

vision and wire circle or: in a strange confessive mood

i am closing my right eye, and staring for many minutes at the tip of my nose, then at my hand, that i keep close to my face, in a vertical position. i am slowly opening my right eye, and closing the left one instead. i am doing this again and again, for hours. i don't know what to make of the wonder i have just discovered, that the image forming in front of me changes if looked at with one eye or another. i am shattered. the world is no longer the world. my hand will never be whole again. doubt has seized my heart. i am closing my right eye, carefully, hoping each time that i am proven wrong, that this was only a momentary delusion. that there is still a way to make the being stable and right.

when i was about 10 years old, i noticed that my eyes got gradually weaker. one day, however, i stumbled upon another groundbreaking discovery: if one uses the fingers to pull at the corner of the eye towards the temples, until the eyes change into an almond shape and then into one thin line narrowing the horizon, the bright clear vision is restored. not for long, eventually tears come and blur the view, but long enough.

by then my conviction that the world is deeply flawed had only become deeper. and I was of the firm belief that nobody would ever like me if i wore glasses. as it happened, i still harboured a somewhat incomprehensible optimism which made me gather all the patient virtues of the little pragmatist who was still alive in me back than (however feebly breathing, i should add). i came up with a brilliant emergency plan: i would employ my new eye-pulling tactics as often as needed to save face in dangerous situations, as implied, for example, by the necessity of jotting down what the teacher was writing on the blackboard. and at the same time i would spend 20 minutes daily (i have no recollection as to why i settled for this precise duration) to exercise wearing my mother's glasses at home and thus correcting my view.

four years afterwards, the result was a complete disaster. i lived surrounded by a perpetual vapour in which all things had lost their natural contours. one day, the flawed world collapsed. my schoolmate betrayed me. intrigued by the sudden and repeated change of the girl he shared the bank with into an implausible chinese doll with misty eyes, he had eventually managed to pull out my secret, which landed in my teacher's ear. and from there in my mother's ear, who, with a puzzled look on her face, took off her glasses and looked at them as if she had seen them for the first time in her life.

i look at the cottage in front of me. then i discover it. i look at the wire circle, wondering about its hidden meaning, and i want to look still closer. step by step, i approach it. i change the place.

suddenly, the time stands still. at the centre of the wire circle the cottage rests in its fullness. shapes have mutated in front of my blinded eyes, and a mandala has emerged. right through the heart of the cottage, there flows another time, unknown to the world. i am roundness myself, sacred in a new body.

and then it happens. slowly, against my desperate wish to resist, my left eye closes. i want to hang onto the cottage walls, to fasten myself to its bricks, the quiet roof. to stop it from gently sliding to the right, breaking through the circle of perfection.

i fail. a bird shrieks in the bush. i turn around.
there is a flutter of wings somewhere, and I am still.


  1. Roxana, you just so have to start doing videos... with your tarkovskiian vision (or perhaps sokurovian is better he being similar but softer, gentler than tarkovski) and your woven commentary --it really does make perfect sense. you will see, when i finally convince you, you will see... (pun intended)

  2. à chaque que je passe ici, j'y trouve une telle poésie qui m'étonne à nouveau et les photos sont superbes!!

  3. hmmm.. this explains why so many of your pictures are so out of focus!! i just thought it was some sort arty-farty expressionism and didn't say anything cos I might sound stupid.

  4. pensum, but i am already convinced :-) anyway, being as curious as i am, there is practically no chance that i refuse to try something new - the problem is that i don't have how to do it, at the moment. let's wait till i get that D90...
    i still can't see myself working with those moving images as one reason i am obsessed with photogrphy is precisely its stillness, but what can i still say when you seem so sure of the contrary :-)

  5. Emese, ce bine ca surazi :-)

  6. omami, je te remercie de tout coeur et te souhaite un merveilleux wueek-end de fete!

  7. zumaaaa :-P

    nonono, in case you didn't get it, now i wear glasses which make me see verrry sharp and i think they look pretty too, so the flawed world has regained something of its lost magic :-)

    (out of focus! ok, i'll post more of them today, just for you :-)

  8. This doomed attempt to hold on to a flawed connection to the flawed world, so much comes into focus here, this ia a center ... and it is, deeply, the effort to hold on to a sense of time, isn't it? ... as so often, here ... a sense of the sadness of time translated into the brokenness of that connection....

    I've been back to this post over and over. I can't explain, not really explain, but I think this is one of the most beautiful things I have seen for a long time....

  9. Fotografiile tale au un magnetism deosebit, o invitatie la reverie si cunoastere, releva o lume noua, pe care o vedem, dar poate ca refuzam sa o iubim asa cum merita. Felicitari!

  10. james, how happy i am am that you are again here! and such words of praise, i really don't know what to say... "a sense of the sadness of time translated into the brokenness of that connection" is the most beautiful description for my failed attempts at ... oh i don't know at what anymore...

  11. Gabriel, ce cuvinte frumoase ai gasit pentru mine si micile mele lumi de aici... iti sunt foarte recunoscatoare!

  12. an ode to optics? :-)

    so moving a recollection.
    Perhaps a sense of the precariousness of our vision makes one all the more sensitive to the graces of seeing? in any case, this misty-eyed child has most graciously been avenged by the photographing adult