Slum Doctor Programme

the picture above my desk
December 18, 2007, 3:07 pm
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There is a certain mystery held in a captured gaze. Eyes that have been caught motionless in time as they glance only for a moment at…what? Many pieces of art are famous because the subject that it captures seems to be looking through the glass of the frame or the lens of the camera directly at you, the observer. You look the image in the eyes and somehow you feel that strange awkwardness and vulnerability you do when you look a stranger or friend in the eyes. There is a certain connection that happens in the meeting of eyes that reminds us that we are human. If you scroll down a couple of posts you will see the picture I am describing.

An Ombogo Girls Academy student got a hold of one of our cameras as we stood in a circle and danced and sang. This student would not have looked at anyone but a close friend in this manner. Or at least that is what I like to think. For a second we are invited into a deep friendship that only growing up together, going through the same hardships can create. The knowledge that this gaze was not meant for me does not cease to make her look personal. Her eyes still seem to penetrate the walls that I build to keep from connecting to her, to her experience, to her pain.

This picture was blown up for an event and now hangs over my desk. I look her in the eyes and instead of experiencing pain or struggle, I find peace, maybe just peace in this moment, or the profound longing for peace in the future, either way there is peace.

Put yourself in your own shoes and let her look you in the eyes, it will change your life.



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