I took this photo from a hotel window. Ironically, after taking it I was unable to see what had caused me to pick up my camera in the first place. After enlarging it, what finally emerged was what first caught my eye. You can do the same now and see what I saw.
How like life that is, I thought to myself. What we think we see boldly may not be there at all and what we don’t see at all stares hard at us from the horizon. If only our minds were as capable of opening as wide as our camera lenses. Imagine what we could really take in?
This afternoon, there were scores of children at my health club involved in various summer camp programs. A large group of six year-olds were playing basketball with a very, low hoop and a very, small ball as I passed by.
“Can I play, too?” I asked several of the little ones standing along a fence.
They stared at me, considering this.
Finally one said, “I think you’re too big.”
Then another one added, “And I think you’re too old.”
“Are you sure?” I asked.
Several piped up, “Yes. Yes, we’re sure.”
“Oh dear,” I replied. “The truth is that I am neither too big nor too old to play with you. You must use your imaginations!”
“Our imaginations?” one asked.
“Yes! Because you must imagine that even though I am bigger and older than you, I still have a little child’s heart and I would love to play with you.”
“Oh,” said one little girl finally. “Then I think that would be okay!”
I almost hugged her.
Later, as I was going through the grocery checkout, the clerk asked me, “How are you today?”
“Adorable!” I replied.
For a moment he looked confused, then he said, “That’s pretty funny.”
“I wasn’t being funny,” I replied. “I’m dead serious.”
Now he was getting nervous.
“You just have to use your imagination,” I said. “In my case, you need quite a bit of it.”
We both cracked up.
Li-Young Lee, one of our finest contemporary poets wrote, “The moon from any window is one part whoever’s looking.” If that is so, I want my eyes to be wide, clear and far-reaching. Above all, I must use my imagination. Without it, I cannot soar like the person in this photo. Without it, no one will play with me.