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Narrowing the Meanings by Richard Fein
published in Volume 3, Issue 1 on February 8th, 1996

Were I to say I love you what precisely would I mean?
Love, the word is used too often.
Don't the sages of conscience dictate that love
is what I should feel for all humanity?
So how can the same word cover
what I'm supposed to feel for both you and them?

Take a gold brick, a good solid piece,
it has weight and depth
and all its worth can be embraced
in just one hand.
Now exploit its malleability,
hammer it, hammer again, and again,
pound it to a sheet a mile square.
What results?
Tissue
almost transparent, with hardly any weight or depth.
Try covering a multitude with such a sheet;
a twitch of a finger, a drop of rain
and the sheet shreds.

What other word could I use to describe
my feelings for you?
An honest, lawyer-like accurate word?
Exhibit A,
this wide angle photo of you at Coney Island.
My eyes become telescopic,
so many other faces surround you but I
focus
sharply and instantly
on you.
My eyes resolve
the design on your blouse
and even the freckles on your face.
The surrounding faces are blurs.
The objective eye would discern different details,
but to me
you
are my focus,
my focus.

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