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Origami

2007


Nearly everyone I’ve met seems very small, as if they are folded and compacted into neat little selves, paper hearts and birds and little boats. Usually I want to unfold them to see what they’re really made of.


Person Number One: A girl my age. When I unfolded her, she didn’t notice. To her I was just one of the many ballerina teddy bears watching from her wall paper. She was very sweet, and when I unfolded her she smelled of nice little flowers. I saw simple drawings of simple ideas about dolls and grass, and confessions of how she used to twist tassels in her ear.


Person Number Two: An elderly man. I never once spoke to him,nor him to me. He didn’t mind my unfolding him; he had had one of those lives where one is analyzed and studied over and over again, and his creases had been done and undone, folded and refolded so many times that parts were worn away and hard to read, and in some places he was torn right through.


Person Number Three: An artist. I met them out of pure happenstance. The artists’ self was very large in comparison to others,and adorned with colorful beads and scraps of paper. When the artist allowed me to unfold them (because they often wish to be, but are hesitant to do so) What I saw was beautiful and sad, for though this artist had room for many folds and many mediums, art was the only thing of any substance which they had, and it wasn’t substance enough.


Person Number Four: A young man. He had trouble allowing me to look between his folds (he worked very hard for very long to get his corners symmetrical and sharp.) He was protective of his crisp edges because he was afraid of that which was within them. Only after many favors and promises did he let me piece him apart, and once I did I found words, hundreds of words, thousands of words, all piled on top of each other and almost illegible, for he was folded so tightly that none of them had any escape.




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