just look at this face - do you know her? i'm trying to see if i ever did, it seems so long ago. this photograph came floating back to me, out of the blue, via email yesterday from one of my art and soul students. i met cece on the elevator going down to the workshop, heard her southern accent, picked up on the fact that it was deep south (i'm from alabama, she's from tennessee), and when she volunteered that she went to auburn university, we put two and two together and realized that we had lived right across the hall from each other for perhaps a year - maybe less - in a very small, old apartment complex. she swore she still had a photograph or two from those days, and said she could blackmail me with them. and look at this child! i'm probably twenty here - and yes, those are flowers in my hair, laced through my dark raven curls for a party. just a regular beer party, nothing fancy. i was like that back then - shoot, i'm like that now - and was known to glue seashells to hairpins and wear those in my hair as well. i look deep into the eyes of this young girl and feel a deep, unexplainable something in my heart. where has she gone? is she still here? i still have the carved ivory tulip-bead necklace that my grandmother mimi strung and gave to me, and wish i had that little mexican muslin top that would fit in so well again with today's "bohemian" styles. my curls are still here, and so is the smile. but my god, i'm thirty.years.older. i have two boys this age! i'm sitting here shaking my head, gazing into that face, into those eyes. it's like looking at an entity from another life, through gauze, at dusk, before the candles are lit. i remember a scene from annie hall, (one of my all-time favorite movies, and one that came out right around the time this photo was taken). she is standing at a party, looking at herself as a younger woman. "i think she looks sort of pretty", she says. pretty, innocent, and young. the world was before me, beckoning. and i just threw back my head and laughed. and laughed, and laughed. and laced more flowers and seashells in my hair, dabbed patchouli on my wrists and at my tender throat. she's still here, that girl. she's just a little wiser, hopefully, and a bit more leery of the world than she was before. but she's still smiling, and wearing her sandlewood and her jewelry.