The night is still and I'm reeling from the questions I've been asking all summer long, with sand between my toes and in my hair, with the waiting, always the waiting and the running forward and then doubling back around the same unanswered question - am I beautiful?
I ask it to the constellations scattered over the humming wild night. I ask it to the strangers who smile at me in the airport as I wait for my flight to help my beautiful friend get married this weekend. I wonder it silently in my eyes and in my heart, and I look in the mirror so curious about that girl who looks back at me.
|(mandie sodoma, sindisiwe photography)|
I remember my friend once told me that I was on a quest for beauty. "Hilary," her voice got serious as she leaned over the desk where I was working. "You want to know what is beautiful." I looked at her in surprise, because I had never thought of it that way before. But that was and is the question, the one I carry in my pocket and that creeps out in my smile when my eyes meet yours over coffee, because I find my answer in you, in the joy of meeting you, in the conversation that floats above us and the laughter that causes other people to stare at us. I can't help smiling because all of you, you are what is beautiful and you remind me and teach me and I store it up like treasure in my heart and it leaks out like sunshine through the porch windows. Beauty is flinging wide the doors of your heart, no matter the past hurt and the past confusion, no matter if the question lingers late in the afternoon or if you don't think you'll ever get an answer. And so my heart's wide open.