In a face

I am intrigued by faces. Here change will show itself clearly. Here you often notice first what is going on. The palette of colours in Kamalashila’s face is incredibly varied these days. It seems to go up and down during the day, with different prevailing tones and colour combinations. When he was being admitted to the hospital in April, some of the medical staff were asking: does he look a bit yellow to you? They were asking me because I am the most familiar with what his face normally looks like. I think he did look a bit yellow, slightly, but then moments later his face looked pink again. Every time you look closely at anyone’s face there are lot of different colours and tones. All somehow blending together to give an impression of how someone is. These days when I look at the faces that pass me on the street, I find myself looking for signs of illness. Perhaps even for signs of impending death. I am happy to see shiny, healthy faces. I worry about people looking a bit pale and drawn. I have never cared that much about babies, but these days I adore seeing them.

Last month we had to phone an ambulance when Kamalashila had become very unwell. After a day of tests they thought it had been a reaction to a new medication. When I told a paramedic about the many changes in KS’s face, she said it is because the body is regulating itself. So that shows itself in the face. This consoles me somehow. I tell myself: this is the way his body regulates itself. There can be a lot of white in his face, around the eyes and the nose. He is anaemic. But sometimes it all gets rosy. He can be a bit puffy. All of a sudden bags appear under his eyes and then later there are dark circles. A smooth face follows on a wrinkly face. I look at my own face in the mirror. I look out for signs. I see the worry. I look with anxiety. I look with resignation. I look puzzled. Friends come to visit and on meeting them at the door I feel my face breaking into a big smile. And then I sometimes apologise. I am just very happy to see you. It is not that I am happy all the time. The way my face looks now doesn’t mean I am happy. But I am happy sometimes. Right now, as I am writing, my face is frowning. I feel into my face and land into my heart.

The face of a sky near Vauxhall. Sometimes it is good to turn to the sky.