Bring the image of a loved one into your mind. Hold that image there for a while. Think of the years you have known her. The tenderness, the pleasures, the joyous shared experiences. Let’s be aware of the waves of emotion that run through the body. Now think of the hurts inflicted on each other. The angers, accumulated over time. The subtle humiliations, the flavour of pain.

Now: it’s stunning for me to realise that the pictures I have built up about this person over the years exist only in my mind. The real person, in all her subtlety and beauty, escapes my images and emotions about her and lives in a free world. Memory creates our relationship. What lies beyond?

The next time she walks into my room, perhaps I’ll find out.


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