Friday, September 2, 2016

Hidden in Plain Sight

Today, I walked out of Loussac Library and a woman came up to me, all aglow and excited. “Come see my artwork,” she said. She led me off just to the side of the entrance. Eventually, it will be planted I’d guess, but right now, it’s all torn up with construction so there are just loose rocks thrown around. It’s a pile of dirt and rocks and pebbles.

She was a woman about my age, dressed nicely, but just so excited.

“I don’t see it,” I said.

“There,” she pointed.

“A few pebbles? Stacked up?” There were three on a rock. They weren’t even a cairn, nothing balanced on anything. Who was missing something here, me or her?

And then I saw it. The indentation in the big rock.
“Do I need to highlight it with marker?” she asked.

“No,” I said, “keep it natural.”

And that was it. A smile when and where I least expected it. But this is what I really loved: Somehow, that regular woman – could be a PTA mother, a secretary somewhere, or even a banker – had seen the potential of a smile in that rock. She’d followed her imagination through and was so excited about it she grabbed me – a stranger – to share it.

I don’t know if she lives her life like this, or if this was a fluke for her, too. But I’m glad I was in the right place at the right time.

How many hidden smiles do I usually miss?


  1. Ok, I saw a naked pregnant woman with pendulous breasts. Even after the reference to the smile it took me a while to find it. But I loved what I saw.

    1. Ha, ha! Did you see the woman in my picture or in the actual rock at Loussac?


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