There is something I wish I could explain
Every time I see you—
but it would take too long, you see, so I shorten it to a word—
“You are beautiful!” I sing, I smile, I shout!
for all to hear, especially yourself.
However, I don’t quite mean exactly what I say.
Like I said, it would take a long time to explain—
(And you know what a rush society’s in)
Because, my dear, when I say you are beautiful
I’m not talking about whether or not your features are perfectly symmetrical
I’m not talking about the proportion of your nose to your face
I’m not talking about the shade of your skin cells
I’m not talking about your musculature
nor the style of your hair
nor the shape of your eyes
nor the size of your wrists
nor the angle of your chin.
You see, beautiful to me
says nothing of the way your mortal seashell is shaped.
Rather, it says everything about the love you’ve fostered in me.
My friend, when I say you are beautiful
I’m talking about the light in your smile
I’m talking about your ceaseless stream of hugs
I’m talking about the attentive way you listen
I’m talking about the elegant way you carry yourself
and the strength of your virtue
and the humility in your relationships
and the humor you bring to desperate situations
and the courage in your kindness.
My dear, you are lovely to behold
in a way that no one is born with—
in a way a blind woman could clearly see.
You are precious, and warm, and glowing
And scarce in a darkening world.
You are beautiful to me.