You don’t know me. I am saying this of course in the way of introduction because I am not famous. I have not written articles or essays that are widespread through any media. It’s unlikely that you’ve seen me other than in passing when we happen to be in the same place. You may be aware of me as a member of family and friendships but…
You don’t know me. I am saying this of course because knowing and being known are dynamic states. You may have met me when I was young, playing on the school jungle gym pretending to be a ThunderCat or G.I. Joe. We ran around and threw Frisbees and maybe we competed to see who could jump the highest from the swings. You never knew my family, though, or what I did on the weekends. You see me now and barely remember we were classmates.
You don’t know me because while we were dancing at parties instead of studying physics, while we drove around in my car but never went anywhere together, while I helped you with your homework and barely passed my classes, you didn’t know my promise. You couldn’t see who I’d become. You see me now and only recognize the memory.
You don’t know that when I was your teacher I was really learning from you. You don’t know that when I see you smile I hope it’s because of me. You don’t know that every time I hear your voice, I am both charmed and frightened by the mystery Of the sound. You don’t know any of these things because they may not even be true. Or at least, they could be false mere moments from now when you walk away or forget.
You don’t know me as I know myself. I have some aspects that I am still uncovering. I have new lenses on my recollections and I will retell the story from where I am rather than when I was. I am deeper than the color of my skin, stronger than the body I am in. My mind is of two thoughts and they struggle to coexist. My spirit is at peace even when my actions bring me to conflict. I am not so complicated but I can be overly simple. What you see I not always what I want you to get.
You don’t know me. And maybe you never will. But here I am.