Two pairs of eyes glancing into each other, pupils glittering with a thrilling sort of intensity and connection.
That instant is both audaciously invasive and extremely vulnerable.
You may look away immediately and go on as if nothing has happened.
Yet you feel as if you’ve been exposed temporarily, as though you’ve allowed them to witness a private part of your life, to see an intimate detail of who you are that you didn’t mean to show.
Perhaps they think the same as well.
Yet it was nothing but a brief meeting of eyes, glances that nearly missed each other.
Your eyes are windows to your soul you can never truly see into. Others always see you more clearly.
Each glance we give and receive are us trying to tell each other that we exist, that we matter, that we have untold stories.
We’re trying to find each other, to touch another person through a mist of vague preconceptions, fears, and uncertainties. We long to know that we’re not alone.
We’re trying to catch a glimpse of who we are.
We yearn to know and be known.
Eyes are where the whole world pours in to fill your mind with colors and sights and visual memories.
It’s also where the whole world of you spills out. Sometimes in drops, sometimes as a flood. Sometimes reluctantly, sometimes without restraint.
Be careful of what you allow into your eyes, and also what you allow out of your eyes.
Have you ever looked over at someone, only to find them looking back at you?
You may feel you’ve fallen headlong into their eyes; or bedazzled by their life and sparkle; or rejected by their coldness; or haunted by the pain you see; or you may shiver from their lifelessness; or experience a million other emotions and reactions.
It may be a look you’ll forget the next instant, or one you’ll ponder over the rest of your life.
With a brief glance, a thought is communicated, permission withheld or granted, a bridge built between two souls.
How strong is that bridge, if bridge it truly be? What makes it so powerful?
Is eye contact a connection at all, or just a glance we only feel as it passes us by?
What do we see when I look into your eyes?
Inspired by John Koenig, “Opia: The Ambiguity of Eye Contact”