seeing the same world
from different angles
Written on September 12, 2009 Alice wrote this "Two Fish" Haiku for my birthday. The illustration is adapted from a watercolor painting Alice made in 1964. She painted the original with one fish facing to the left. For this illustration I digitized the original and flipped it horizontally to create a second fish facing in the opposite direction.
Alice wrote the title for her "Two Fish Haiku" in Italian using Dui" rather than "Due" for "Two". She wrote it on the top margin of the classified section of the StarTribune, three months before she died in 2009.
See the notes below.
Notes by Roman:
(1) Alice wrote a Haiku annually for my birthday. Following her surgery in 2008 she was in critical condition and unable to do anything. She suffered a global impairment that limited her ability to talk and writing words was extremely difficult. In the course of the past year I encouraged her to write but I had no success. Surprisingly, on my 80th birthday, she wrote this Haiku for me. By writing it she revealed that she experienced a vibrant inner life underneath the mask of a global cognitive impairment labeled "encephalopathy". Her impairment made it difficult for her to speak and she labored to even sign her name. She labored with simple tasks. Yet this brief poem is clear and fluent bearing the fullness of her mind & wit. So profoundly true. Knowing its truth brings tears. Yes, we are Two Fish "seeing the same world from different angles, often."
(2) "Two": She had seen an image of two fish with an Italian label earlier that morning. Perhaps her memory of Latin that uses an "i" for masculine plurals led her write "Dui" rather than "Due".