…On Poetry and Fiction
Just “One Word” Away (“Mirrors”)
written by: Phyllis P. Colucci
One word becomes one idea, becomes one sentence, becomes one poem, becomes one story. It must start from just “one word”. Today my one word is “Mirrors”.
As I walked past the old antique shop, the only one in the neighborhood, I stopped to peek into the window. I love antiques. Every item told a story. Whether it was a piece of wooden furniture, an old tarnished photo frame, a worn out clock, a porcelain doll, chipped serving platters, ornate jewelry, or exquisite vases, it didn’t matter. There was a special tale hidden within each item that held the secrets of its time and the emotions of its owners. These pieces came to life within the walls of the antique shop.
Suddenly, my eyes came across an attractive elderly woman who stood in front of a long armoire mirror and stared at her reflection for quite a long time. I watched as she turned and twisted, moved closer and farther away again, then stood still and stared into it for a second time. She leaned in closer and gazed at her face. She ran her aging fingers across her forehead, her cheeks, her lips, her chin…then pressed out the many folds and wrinkles she discovered around her eyes. When she turned to walk away, she noticed me staring at her, and invited me into the shop with a wave of her hand. As I approached her, she asked me to stare into the mirror and tell her what I saw. I said I saw a reflection of “me”. She asked how old I was. I told her I was twenty-five. She replied, “When you get to be my age pretty young lady, and you look into a mirror, you will no longer recognize your image as ‘me’. One day you will understand. You will see someone you no longer recognize staring back at you with foreign eyes.” Then she walked away with a sad smile on her face and exited the antique shop.
I continued to stare into the mirror, hypnotized by my own reflection. The mirror spoke to me through subtle images, and I listened as it taught me about life. It showed me that mirrors are reminders of who we are, who we once were, and who we may become. It explained quite clearly that mirrors reveal stories of our past, present and future, through reflections and images that tell no lies.
“Look at me”, the mirror said
I’ll tell you things you’ll want to know
I’ll show you images of your life
The past, the present, the future “glow”
You’ll see reflections of passing time
Aged perfection, like pricey wine
You may see tears and smiles, my love
You may see the innocence of a precious dove
You may see evil and madness too
But keep in mind, you will see “you”
So “Look at me”, the mirror said
Study your likeness; then forge ahead
At times you won’t like what you see
It is then you must act, and set yourself free
Embrace the stories the mirror tells
Embrace the glories the mirror sells
Purchase those images and make them yours
You’ll have bought the keys to your life’s doors
Fear not what I tell you, or what you see
Come closer my dear, and speak with me
You see the eyes that stare back at you?
The hair, the nose, the full lips too?
It’s the mirror’s truth; it will never lie
Come say hello, and not good-bye
This is your life, the way it should be…
When you look in the mirror
What do you see?
Say it proudly, dear!
Say it loud and clear!
Shout it out and say, “This is ME I see!”
NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR:
Just one word becomes one idea, becomes one sentence, becomes one poem, becomes one story. Magical!