Noémi, 30, New York, USA

 

I think I need to start his entry on a new page.
Today I am thirty years old, tomorrow I’ll be thirty-one and then I’ll never be thirty-one again.


I watch the girl in the cheap mirror of my bathroom, in the darkened windows between screeching subway stations, in the elegant shopping windows of the upper east-side musing.


Her azure-blue eyes are fashionably deep-set, her matted long blonde-hair slims down her face. There is a degree of exciting fitfulness in it; perhaps because of the large nose, bold forehead and thin lips pushing against one and other discordantly.

Or thanks to the timely appearance of the trademark - birthmark.


I stand in the rush and watch this face like a well-trained spy, awaiting an unpredictable, sudden move. The throb gives way to silence; the present becomes internalized, filling physical space. I see the years, the milk-teeth of time broken into me in the corner of my eye or on my forehead and I recall the drawing of the brown hat which Saint-Exupery insolently inserted The Little Prince…Stop! I didn’t want to say, brown hat. I didn’t want to speak about that brown hat at all. I wanted to talk about the snake that swallowed an elephant. What made me think about the brown hat? It’s not a brown hat; it is a snake that swallowed an elephant. That is what I wanted to write, but brown hat crawled in in perceptively and slyly and sent the elephant and the snake into the darkness of my brain. My face twitches as if observed from the outside.


I lean closer, concentrating.

 

It is hiding within me. I see the sparkle and the freshness. I must catch it, I must connect. I am sorry that I ever-so-often am inattentive and let it be suppressed, throwing it off far-away, deep-corner, a lonely vacuum, although I am not threatened by Orpheus’ punishment if I look back. It flashes, there it laughs. Its warmth permeates my body; my soul is woven of memories.


The child within me smiles and it sings. It believes and it creates. It loves and “dances to architecture.”


Its labors.


It is courageous and assertive. It is open to the world and has no prejudice- how could it have?


It likes what is sees, whom it sees there in the shop-window on the Upper East Side. It knows what she has grown into, what she is struggling with, what she has absorbed, what is leaking from her backlash shadow.


It finds it grievous that I so rarely remember it; it carefully twists my heart with its soft hand, tickling met secretly with other hand in the meantime.


Bitter-sweet.
My dearest sensation, experience, feeling. Life itself.
The feeling of which it is worthwhile to write and create. It is the tears that turn into pearls and folk-tales; it is in positive thinking in psychology, reflected by the late afternoon sunshine. 

I must take care of the child within me; I must nurse it and love it. I must respect it much, much more. I must hold it by the hand, merging it into me, I must wonder at the world, again and again. 

 

It gathers strength and fills the space. 

It is warm and intimate; the colors are turning from yellow to carmine, although it is snowing outside. The aroma of toasted peanuts lingers in the air. The scent of Gabor’s aftershave. He is just shaving, still a little prickling, his long hair touches me. It is tickling. The softness of Saci squeezed into a pair of corduroys. Red-faced lightness emanates from her. I get a flying kiss on my forehead from Dora. She is holding a cup; the spoon is in it, her coffee has long since gone cold. I am surrounded by my family, the warmth incessantly rising from the vaporizer. We talk, we laugh. We talk. Teeth crunching peanuts. We laugh. 

 

There are hands that provide safety and that are always there, and the bodies. The protective, understanding and loving, giving softness and faith, parents wanting to do the best, bringing me up the best way they could. I sense their sent, their breath, the warmth of their skin. I see the direction of their thoughts. Mama Papa. 

 

Shrieking, the city pulls me back; my soles sink into the cold concrete. It ruthlessly demands to be present. I wake up. 

 

Christmas lights flashing in the shop-window. Red, gold and green. The smell of wet pine pours from the shop to the street. 

 

I look at the girl with azure- blue eyes. I know that she has yet to climb the Himalayas. This fills me with happiness and an ethereal strength. 

 

I feel gratitude. Rare, sincere, self-evidently pure gratitude. I am grateful for my wonderful and exciting family, for the childhood I could have. I am grateful that they are there for me, that they think of me, that I can think of them. I am grateful that I can stand here in New York and remind myself that wherever I may be, whatever I may achieve, whatever I think of the world, the child who knows everything about this world is there inside of me. 

 

I am grateful that I cannot grow old, but I grow up for this life and to give life. 

I am grateful that if I state something, another, I create reality out of it. 

I am grateful that my family and friends support me and urge me to create. 

I am grateful to my husband for being there and for taking me for his mate. He is one of the purest and most original persons I’ve ever known. 

I am grateful for all the love I can get and give. 

 

Berlin, Budapest, Beijing, New York. Traces of my teenage years with arrows on the walls of my room, above my bed. These arrows are deeply embedded in me; they became my compass and cornerstone, which I polished into reality. 

 

I know which way I need to go. I know to whom I am grateful and for what. I know that age does not count; it is no more than a set of coordinates, to help find directions. I know that forward is upward and that I have to climb the Himalayas. 

Why? Because it is ahead of me. 

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©2020, Courtney McMahon & Anna Kasnyik