An ode to Wrinkles
“What else can we do but to give an ode to wrinkles?”
An old woman with deep set wrinkles passed me by yesterday evening while I was walking through one of the stone carved alleys of the silent city. She seemed to have stepped right out of a novel — a Russian novel where it is terribly cold. Her petite aging frame was buried in layers of clothing; her coat collar held high with her old hands carrying protruding veins and a loose gold wedding ring, inhibiting the cold from creeping in and leaving only her face exposed to succumb to the glacial air.
I thought she was a ghost — she had quite an arresting presence, which was only enhanced in that alley of shadows, but I told myself ghosts would never look so ghostly. I stood there motionless while she passed by me, catching my gaze as she did so. She had a blank expression, but her eyes amid the heavy wrinkles exuded an enigmatic trait, rendering her ghostly and once again, for a moment, I expected her to pass right through the wall.
Her face, it looked worn down by laughter, by immeasurable sadness and by the stains of relative time. It looked burdened with regret, with worries and pain and a forehead drawn with anger lines. Only her cheeks were plump, which, laden with time, dominated her face and held the laughter lines she had invoked over the years.
It was a face that showed no concept of what immobility means. There was history on that face, with thousands of stories inscribed on those lines. Stories which I did not need to know but I could see.
Youth is wonderful, really. It is set in newness, excitement, confusion, angst, rebellion, defiance, day dreams and invaluably, beauty, nevertheless, how long will I have to wait for my face to be stained with relative time?
Story credit: The Row; Burberry Prorsum; The Silent City, Mdina.