Review: A poet’s-eye view of the topic. It’s a meditation on the experience of seeing. Of course, we don’t often see. We try to see, but we don’t. But people who can’t see because of cataracts, for example, who haven’t seen for a lifetime with cataracts, born with them, when eye surgeons learned that the cataracts could be removed, those people who see for the first time and are amazed by what they see. In a way, this essay is about those who couldn’t see and then could, and her own spiritual attempts at seeing, a subjective experience. It’s also about her impressions of light.
Quote: “Unfortunately, nature is very much a now-you-see-it, now-you-don’t affair. A fish flashes, then dissolves in the water before my eyes….”
Quote: “On the other hand, many newly sighted people speak well of the world, and teach us how dull is our own vision.”
Quote: “It’s all a matter of keeping my eyes open.”
The Art of the Personal Essay: An Anthology from the Classical Era to the Present. Ed. Phillip Lopate. New York: Anchor Books. 1995.