18 February

Smiling At The World: Pure Visions

by Jon Katz
What They Teach Us

I think Emma is sending me such lovely photos of Robin to keep me smiling while Maria is away. When I was visiting in Brooklyn, a woman, a grandmother came up to me and said, almost tearfully, “how wonderful to see them so pure, before they see too much of the world. They don’t know ugliness,” she said, sighing, “only love. That is why it is so easy to love them so much.”

There is a lot of truth to that, I think. Sometimes, you wish they could be put into a sealed time capsule and keep them pure and unscarred, before they join the left or the right or watch cable news and start getting angry at the world and finding reasons to fear or hate other people.

But I wouldn’t wish that on Robin, that is no way to live. At the moment, she finds the world fascinating, and seems to have a smile for much of what she sees. I see she is a happy child, and I am sure Emma and Jay will work hard to keep her that way.

One way or another, we have to accept real life and live through and around it. In my life, I have much to smile at – Maria, my work, my photos and books, my blog, the animals here, my friends, the promise of each day. I wouldn’t want to hide from life, even to avoid politics.

I wonder what the point is when the reality of the world intrudes, it much be such a shock to a pure and much loved creature.

If I can send a message back to Robin, I would underscore the value of her smile. She will need it.  I think so many of our problems begin when we forget how to smile. I believe people who smile are infused with a holy spirit, I trust them and feel good around them.

As for Robin, she has a million dollar frown and a pretty intense stare too. Her eyes suggest a person of strength and conviction.

Email SignupFree Email Signup