Depending on the Light

BY ROGER PAO

Depending on the Light

The moonlight praises the plaza in front of the Hark. In the starkest moments of my loneliness,I have seen you in the moonlight. I have waited for you to look overyour shoulder to find my forehead pressed against doubleglass doors, my vision retracing your footsteps.I have waited for you to turn around and recognize me.

But you have not done so. You probably will not do so. I realize that now. As an only child, I played board games alone. I opened Christmas presents by myself beneath the plastic pine treethat my parentsput up to keep me from crying. I have spent many a birthday alone –and I will spend many more alone in the years to come.

In Austin Hall, depending on the light, from the back row of Austin North, I can see the beautiful backs of all the beautiful heads of my fellow classmates. No one will turn around. They willnot see me seeing them, but I want you to know that I have seen them. I have seenyou in florescent, sun, flash, neon, star, indigo, lamp —

all genres of light. I want you to know that I have loved you,and I still love you. I want you to know that, even in loneliness, even as the loneliest of lawyers in the late night hours of an empty law firm, I will love you through every light.

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