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Blemished, Perfection

November 18, 2009

She glances from across the counter, and her eyes, her perfect, green eyes, hold still. They blink slowly, the pillow of dark chestnut lashes fan out and upwards like a thick plumage of palm leaves. Glossy. Curved. Perfect.

What would it be like to press my index finger to their tip…and press down gently on that fan of curvature? I wonder silently. Would those little, useless pieces of hair succumb to my will, then spring back to their natural, perfected state? I wonder if they are soft…like mine. I love doing that to mine, except they are straight and fine and very stubborn. Sometimes for no reason in particular, I’ll hold out my index finger, line it up straight and parallel to my eye just under my lashes, and blink. Each bend of each lash sends a tiny jolt to its base, hidden in the crevice of the upper rim of my eye, and the sensation expands, the way a warm gulp of mulled wine seeps down my throat and permeates every single pore in winter. It makes me feel alive, the awareness of each blink. It’s the closest to being able to feel my thoughts forming.

I blink a lot, it occurred to me, especially when I’m anxious.

“Nice color.” The Perfect Green Eyes motions to my fingertips, now tapping unconsciously on the marbled surface. “What’s that? Fuchsia? Fuchsia’s in this year. It’s all over the runway.” She waves her hand nonchalantly, as if shooing away a non-existent fly.

“It’s pink…berry, maybe.” I blink.

“Huh.” Those eyes again. There are some kind of gold speckles in it. I make a mental note to self. Is that what people call hazel?

“Don’t last very long though huh?” She waves again. “I hate chipped nail polish, so annoying.”

…..A wave of severe indifference suddenly overcomes me. I will my face to stay still.

“And I like what you did to your hair, you know, that streak thing.” The Green Eyes flash, a glint of glee, I imagine.

“It was red.” I hear myself say. “Then orange, and now it’s kind of blond.”


“My hair doesn’t hold color well.” I shrug.

“That must be annoying.” The Green Eyes blink again, and a smile curls up the corner of her perfectly plump, pink lips.

I want to laugh. But I don’t want to seem crazy.

“Actually, I kind of like it.” I feel a grin forming. It just creeps up my cheek like when you know you are about to tell a really funny joke, but you have to pretend that you don’t know. You know?

“Well, it’s certainly interesting. Not like my hair, it’s just always this boring red color.” She tosses her long, wavy, crimson tresses behind her shoulder. They are glorious, and she knows it.

“You can’t say you aren’t colorful.” The grin broadens, and it tickles.

The Green Eyes pause, then widen, and a trail of laughter spills out of those pink lips. Pitch-perfect.

She looks back one last time, those perfect green eyes flashing, and flips those god damn perfect hair again like she surely has done many times before. “Well, have a good day!”

“I will.” My smile now full-blown and I’m not even trying. “You too.”

Out of the corner of my eye, I catch the guys behind me in line following her figure appreciatively with their gazes as she makes her way towards the door.

I reach into my hair and search for the faded strand of ashy blond. I can’t see. But I feel it.

Winding it around my left index finger, a deep breath escapes that I didn’t even realize I was holding. A wave of relief washes over me.

And just like that, a trail of laughter spills out of my plain, espresso-stained lips, and bounces off the ivory, smooth walls.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. November 19, 2009 12:54 AM

    Ahhhhh that is incredible writing. As soon as I started reading it I was entranced and I was THERE. I am not a writer like you so I cannot possibly express how amazing your writing is. But I love to read and have read a lot, and your writing is some of the best I have read :D


    Grace: Thank you! And I can’t possibly express how amazing your crochet creativity is…seriously, I may have to steal that lil bee! xo

    • November 19, 2009 4:11 AM

      Haha I’ll crochet you something before you visit ;)

      Grace: oooh, be still my heart.

  2. November 21, 2009 6:33 PM

    The writing, as always, is exquisite, Grace, but what strikes me the most about this entry is the photo at the beginning of the post. It’s stirring up a flurry of emotions in me that I recognize but cannot explain–not that I ever could. It has touched some deep emotional core within me, something at the very root of my existence, at the very center of my soul. “Beauty is truth, truth beauty” perhaps?

    Grace: what can I say. I love that photo.

    • November 22, 2009 3:41 PM

      Okay, I think I figured it out: that photo combines sensualness with innocence. In a way, it’s like combining “lust” with “caution”: two concepts that seem to be at opposite ends from each other but, when mixed together, end up complementing and strengthening each other. The result is that it reminds me of every single girl that I ever had a crush on (hmm, I guess sensualness + innocence=my “type”–have to remember that when I go back to Japan), which creates feelings of fulfilled longing and happy sorrow. And I bet you didn’t even plan it that way. ;-) It’s like biting into a madeleine–I see the photo, and the emotional memories flood my being.

      Anyway, I don’t think you have anything to fear from that checkout lady. It sounds like her beauty is only skin deep (though it sounds like you already knew that). ;-)

  3. Tom Dark permalink
    November 22, 2009 10:17 PM

    Peekaboo. XOXOX

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