For our purposes today let's consider "beauty" to be women, and the "beast" to be politics.
First, let's dispense with the "beast" - The reprieve from negative ads on the campaign trail did not last long. One knew it wouldn't but one had hoped that during the time of silence, the candidates would rethink their approach to running for the highest office in the land.
I'm wondering if it's possible to run for political office without sounding or being negative. Is it always necessary to slam the public with what's wrong with your opponent, instead of what's right with you? The polls say yes. Yes, it is necessary. The pundits say the polls show that people pay more attention to negative TV ads. <sigh> If you're running for office, they say (they 'said' on TV just last week)... if you don't run negative ads, you aren't taken seriously. Or some such nonsense.
It comes back to the general public. You and me. WE are the reason television is slathering our free time with negativity. It's a balm designed to make candidates more noticeable (more acceptable?). It makes us feel better about them. It brings them down to our level. Shocking? Maybe so. But true. We expect the bad images, the bad language (yes, even the swearing, as banal as it is these days), complete with crossed eyes, deep eyebrows, mouths turned down in the corners. And, we nod our heads and think, "Yeah. That other guy, he's really bad. Yeah, my guy is right... he wouldn't lie to me. That other guy, he's really bad." Or thoughtsthereof. And, we feel better. Cause, if the 'other' candidate is so bad, then we're so good.
It's not true, most of it. It's all taken out of context. I despair of having a political campaign that totally focuses on what's good, what can be done, what solutions there are, what the PEOPLE can do... with government help or without. Won't happen. Oh, wait...did I just get negative? I did. Time to move on...
Beauty is a woman of distinction. If you're of female persuasion - yes, if you're a woman and you're of a certain age and you're reading this, you are beauty. We often talk of things of beauty - buildings or mountains or landscapes, but within every beautiful 'thing' in the world, there is an empty hole that needs filling. Add a woman of distinction and suddenly the 'thing' breathes with a softness, a slope of shoulder, a tilt of lips, a lift of hair - bringing a new awareness to the idea of its beauty. It breathes now... it carries life.
Cars, landscapes, water, mountains - these are things of 'beauty' described with womanly terms - how smooth is the fiber or fabric of ... each of these things? Yes, even cars have fabric. How curved or colorful? How complicated, with lines that intersect each other, creating illusions that tug at the brain and whisper terms of endearment? How sexy and loving - echoing with the quiet notes of a favorite song?
Beauty was the topic of conversation today, with a small group of women I know. Women I know... though I have never met some of them. Women I know... from the exchange of words... about beauty. About us. About living in distinction. About how we embrace the linen of our lives - how we add the colors we love and form the close-knits wraps that curve about ourselves, to protect us from the beasts.
We clutch at yesterday, sometimes, because tomorrow is a strange world we are wary of. We do not rush into tomorrow, as we once did - we often pause on the edge of the threshhold and ponder the consequences of stepping off of that short precipice. What happened to yesterday? we muse. Why is it so long ago?
If only we'd known enough to be alive, all those yesterdays ago. As we gaze through the window of our memory, squinting at previous moments alive with shadows, we try to see around corners and we invent new memories, because the old ones don't suffice.
It is in this moment - the moment we begin to feel the distinction of our lives, that we realize our beauty is in our soul. It's in the way we walk or the way we brush our hair. It's in the way we smile at our grandchildren or kiss the dog on her head, each morning, avoiding the quick, wet tongue wishing to paste a kiss on our faces. Our beauty is in our shoulders - gently sloping across our backs, as if caressing us - reminding us that each day brings more beauty to flow over our bodies, across our breasts and around our hips.
Our beauty is in ourselves - and we share it - we women of distinction - when we open our arms and fling off the wrinkles of yesterday - beckoning, instead, the crisp, comforting lines of now, of today. Because, we know, finally we know, that beauty is not in our eyes or our hair, it's not the shape of our neck or the lift of our bosoms; beauty is not in the shrug of our shoulders or the callouses on our feet; beauty is in us, in our lives. Beauty is what we are, when we stop trying to be... beautiful.
And, now, tomorrow seems a friendlier place. A place we step into...with eager expectation.