JUST A LITTLE STORY
Let me tell you a little story. I remember a picture story of a man that sat close to a girl in a park. The first image portrayed the man as ugly, dressed in an unbuttoned black shirt, with all manner of rings, deep scars, and tattoos. The pretty girl was dressed in an angelic white gown with curly hair. Now both had one hand behind their backs that no one could see what they held. People (including myself) admired this lovely girl (and oh my, she was cute). In another image, their hands were revealed. The raggedy man held a bunch of flowers and the pretty girl had a sharp knife. The knife made me rethink how lovely I previously thought she was. Looks are deceitful.
WHAT BEAUTY IS TO ME
Beauty is everything that makes someone or a thing pleasing, attractive, or acceptable. To me, beauty goes beyond the physical. To some, it may just be things they see or feel. Blue clouds, sunset, cornfields, white beaches, red lips, or moonshine may appeal to sight. Yes, they are natural things we think or see. Another person may look at them as standard and nothing special. Everyone has a viewpoint. When I admire flowers that grow by the roadside, it may just be a weed to someone else. Beauty is when we see things differently. An Indian actor said that “Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder.” I agree, but one may not need a beer to see.
I love it when poets discuss issues. I and Adekunle Ridwan VW moderated on the topic and compiled what poets have to say. I hope you enjoy this.
WHAT IS BEAUTY?
Rose Marie Raccioppi says that beauty is WORDS… Letters that call to be sounded, silent ones in support… and so BEAUTY calls to Being, Exchange, Aspiration, Unity, Truth, Yielding to the grace of creation. Be this known heart to heart. The petals of a flower, the fingers of a hand… Beauty in its manifestation, in its giving. Maxwell Rae says it’s seeing beyond the flesh of anything and seeing the beauty in everything.
Ricky Guiang said beauty is calmness and serenity. Beau Blanchard says it is a recognition of peace and comfort in and with another individual. Ashley Yelhsa has this to say, “Beauty is the magnifying radiance and essence of all things good and pleasant with a hug and a kiss of grace with Its loving, kind and gentle nature. It’s the sweet-savoury of all things pleasant and good.” Theo Perry says, “a Poet’s perception of beauty is a line of being genuine, a display of confidence, a portray of positive love. Each one entails more to please with a smile.”
Cathy Deslippe aptly put it thus: “To some beauty is what you see. To others, it’s ascent. The sound of a child’s laughter. A gift you haven’t opened yet. For me, beauty is the opportunity to write poetry.” Bella Michel puts it thus: “Little details. Small moments. Genuine emotions. Spectating on large events and taking in the details as an observer. Silence is beauty. Solace is beauty.”
C. J. Mitchell has it that beauty is whatever intrigues and inspires the soul in any given moment. Esther Cenat said beauty is subjective. He is left to interpretation. Barbara Newman said that beautiful colours. Rich Granvold opined, “Beauty is what is seen with the eyes of our hearts.” R. Paul Howell said beauty is transparency.
David Gammon has this to say, “beauty can be many things to us. For me, it is a space, an area of nature. Rolling hills and valleys. A sunrise, the smell of the wet ground after a shower. To me, beauty is defined in words and actions. If I meet someone on my rounds that isn’t ubiquitous and judgemental, then that is beautiful. I have met people who look pretty outside but inside have nothing but bullshit to offer. You know the sort, the one that will bad-mouth you.
Some of the best people I have ever met and known in my 50 years of existence have had a mental illness or not been good-looking. I embrace our imperfections because that is what makes us human.” He went further: “Beauty is defined not in the fine lines of a careless whisper, but the actions of one.” Kami Velasquez supported, “Beauty is the gift of giving with no thought for anything in return.”
“Life itself is the proper definition of beauty. With all its ups and downs, happiness and sorry… because one side is always incomplete. And what can be more complete than life.” Pranay Raj. Mattie Green says, “Beauty is in everything I see, live and breathe it. Beauty is what the eyes cannot truly see. It’s a healing that took place before life, and even after death, it’s a beauty that no one can see. It’s an aroma. It’s a taste and sees with your mouth, lips, and tongue. It’s as refreshing as the morning light and as beautiful as itself is true. Beauty has no definition but can be defined by others.”
R. J. Williams believes that there’s no one correct universal answer. “To some, beauty is a flower with a bee pollinating it. To Jeffrey Dahmer type people, beauty is dismembered body parts on a dinner table.” Read A. Paul Owens, “Beauty is everything that inspires any lust. From sexual to just. Beauty raised 10,000 armies and rode peace on 10,000 sunsets. Beauty is living each day at the moment with the absence of regrets. Beauty is making love to someone you can’t live without. With every orgasm growing, the absence of doubt. Beauty is the innocents in a child’s mind. As they fulfil their dreams playing with toys they find.”
To Ugomma Ezewuiro, beauty is simply life! While Hitendra Kumar Shrivas said beauty in Nature, nothing else. Sameh Ibrahim quipped that beauty is being. Dom Capobianco offered that beauty is just a human concept. Nancy Melendez says it is authenticity, and Bethan Williams called it the truth. Charlotte Gunning’s provided that “it is not a shape, but a mindset and the best indicator of it is self-confidence.” Elizabeth Foley says it’s that which makes the heart sing.
Kristine Perito’s idea goes with mine. She said, “Simply put, beauty is different things to different people.” Vanda Kudlackova said beauty is being yourself. To end, Millie Richie Kiefer says it is everything and nothing!
FEATURED POEMS ON BEAUTY
A baby cooing.
A star is going nova.
The smile of a bride.
The blush of a teenage boy.
The laughter, unafraid of a grandma
The solid advice of a grandpa.
The wind in the trees
A tiger on the hunt.
The smell of sage and sweetgrass burning in a sweat lodge.
The peyote and ayahuasca visions.
I was lying in the arms of love.
A healthy poop.
A cold glass of lemonade on a hot summer’s day.
Children are playing.
What is beauty?
Life is in action, but just contemplation.
Bryan Perkins c/o L. N. O.
The currency of the mind
In my eyes
It’s the flaws that drive me crazy,
To me, the true beauty of a woman is in her flaws,
That’s what distinguishes her from all rest
Every man desires a beautiful woman
But no man desires a flawless woman
And when you find that woman
And fall in love with her flaws,
You have then found a flawless woman
Imperfection is everyone’s
Most brutally beautiful feature
So thank you,
For being perfect,
Not for the world,
But perfect for me
Anju Kalra Sethi
Thank you, dear God
For down by my sidewalk
Under the shining Sun
I saw a pretty little purple butterfly
It stirred me up
In stillness, I grew and encountered the hidden me in mine
Underneath layers and layers of shields and swords to linger on
to the thought, I dwelled in
Caressing love leaf twinned pines and roses
While I kept the walking feet, the pretty creature fathomed
It filled me with more love
Thank you might today tomorrow be let it.
Listen to memories at this moment I am fine
Adekunle Ridwan VW
The world of creation;
The gentle smile of a little child.
The sparking of the stars and glimmering sunshine.
The radiant colours of the rainbow.
The grace that flows from a river that never runs dry.
The sweet melodious song is emanating from the skylark.
The abyss of the ocean.
A great phenomenon;
The world is beautiful!
Heaven is a beauty!!
God is beautiful!!!
So what comes to your mind when you hear the word beauty? Have a great day.