There is me.
I see my hand, my eye, my skin.
I look through these brown eyes.
I look at you.
You who are not me.
Beyond me skin,
past my eyes,
beyond my hand
You, that I can touch.
You that I can see.
You, who are not me.
You are the Other.
You, who are not me.
Not my skin, not my hair, my ears.
And because you are not me, I am not you.
Through your eyes, I am the Other.
I am not you.
Not of your hands and skin, not of your body.
No matter how much I may long to merge, no matter the hours I spend staring into your eyes.
I am the Other. Just as you are the Other.
Cherry blossoms drift between us, their pink wings fly, and I know that they too, they are not me. Not my skin and flesh, having nothing to do with my bones and eyes. The are the Other. All that is not me. All that I can see and everything I cannot.
For everything is the Other. Everything past this wall of pale skin and this head of short dark curls. The hills and their stories, the trees and their years. They are all beyond me, by definition and purpose and being. They are all things with other lives and other hurts and laughs.
The wall containing me is my prison and my castle, the way I was birthed, the way I have known. Only now, perhaps now I get a glimmer of the Other. The fear of you, the fear of me.
We look at each other, two sets of eyes wide open and staring, each looking into the Other.
But what if we see?
And what if I only feel one heart beating?
What if I stare into the reality and not the illusion?
Is there me?
Is there really the thing with hair and teeth and skin?
Is there a Me?
Is there a You?
Is there an Other?
Is the great illusion the only way to live?
To survive beyond the white walls of an institution and small capsules three times a day. How long can this be explored before we fall into smelly pits and metal cuffs…I see you as the Other, except those times in which we join, when your eyes look like the golden pools that I remember from a dream, and your skin tastes like mine baked beneath the sun. Then the illusion fades, and I see the Other, wrapped in red threads and dark curls, looking like my image in a mirror, looking like it was never anything Other than me.