It was impossible to describe, seeing her walking past, watching her walk toward her flat with the purpose she had always had going anywhere. It was the white dress today, the flowy one with a bow at neck and tan heels, headphones in, almost a trot. Head up. She had never known just how mischievous that look had been, having never recreated it in a mirror for herself. It was a facial expression that only appeared in those moments, in her solitude, during her to and fros.
It was impossible to describe, seeing her float past without worry. A perfect snapshot into a life with all its sorrows and grief condensed into that tiny moment, passing someone on the street. That she could remember everything that had happened to her, that would happen to her, and yet no recollection of this moment. What was she thinking about that day? Was it before or after her father’s death? Was it before or after the discovery? Was it, was it, was it?
It was impossible to describe, seeing her as she was, without being herself. There is such uncertainty in being oneself; the fears, the doubts, the misgivings. Believing you are ugly. Believing you are fat. Believing you are stupid. Believing that maybe you are not any of those things, but just unloveable.
Oh to be able to tell her what would happen! To transcend language and show her time on a flat still surface where her beginning and end would be clear. Don’t worry, she could say, in the end, you don’t get to where you want to be and yet it never mattered, there was happiness and sadness and love and loss and life where you went instead!
And then she turned the corner of 86th, and was gone.