On Learning to Wear Glasses

ON LEARNING TO WEAR GLASSES I However it happened, eventually my eyesight waned, lost the crisp and let the world blur. Edges of objects grew a certain fur. Details erased easily as chalk. And in this slack process of loss, focus stepped away from specifics, vision relying on bits of internal reckoning, the stilts of my other senses. Under a norm of semi-clear, I saw watercolors lean on memory, learned how landscapes never point to individual sufferings. II With glasses I see perhaps too well. This clarity an intimacy without permission. Not just the amazement of sudden freckles or bulging veins, but the entire abundance of particulars. My eyes off on their own. Loose dogs. Some times for a reprieve, I remove them. My hand a wand. The world takes a step back. As if it were possible to end such scrutiny, pause the immediate. Then as the routine of glasses moves between choice and habit, I recognize how much of this living is an emulsion dependent on resolve to see beyond a lens. Previously published in the Manzanita Quarterly (1998-2004)