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The eyes have it

     In this day of masks, the eyes have it. Not the nose—unless your mask has slipped, but then you're s'posed to pull it up. Quick! No one wants your germs! So pull it up quick, even if you have a cute nose, or an impressive nose, or you just had your nose resculptured to fit your face better. Nope! Your nose cannot make its appearance until mask days are over. Sorry.

     So the eyes. Those expressive orbs peering out above your mask. They now have the job of revealing your innermost feelings—at least the ones you want to share. They suddenly have to take over the job of our lips, cheeks, chin and. . . yes, nose. You know, sometimes you wrinkle it. Our ears are still showing, but they're not real emotional, so no problem.

     We can't hug, shake hands, or give each other a pat on the back, and elbow taps aren't too good at conveying feelings other than "Hi, good to see you" or "Bye, see you later," so the eyes are it until the pandemic is under control.

     I've looked more closely at eyes lately than I ever did before the pandemic, but sometimes I'm so busy making sure my mask is staying up over my nose and not encroaching on my eyes that I forget to look at the person handing me the goods at the drive-up window. When I suddenly remember to look, it's a wonderful feeling to see a pair of friendly eyes looking back at me with a smile I can almost see through the mask.

     Thank goodness we still have our voices to get us through this. A cheerful "Have a good day" shines through the eyes as the person waves us on. Said a bit louder than usual so as not to be muffled by the mask. 

     Sparkling eyes, happy eyes, friendly eyes, sad eyes, laughing eyes—hopefully not angry eyes, but yes, those, too. It truly is the time of the eyes.

     Oh! Yes! The eyebrows! How could I forget those? They are so expressive! Raised, arched, perfectly formed, craggy, thick, penciled-in, the perfect accessory to the eyes. Together they make a perfect pair, arching to say, "What? Really?" or turning down into a frown, "I don't think so." The brows stay relatively motionless for friendly, agreeable, loving moments but boy! can they react to unbelievable—to them—stories, or disagreeable—again, to them—opinions.

     Go ahead. Take a look at your eyes. Smile. Frown. Look happy. Look sad. How are your eyes doing? No cheating. Cover your mouth and nose and focus on the eyes. Better yet, put your mask on first. What d'you think?

     Later, when you're out in the world, pay attention to the eyes of the person you're talking with—keep an eye on the eyebrows, too!—as you go through the drive-through or do your curbside pickup or greet the UPS driver at your door as he runs back to her truck.

     Wait! You can't see his eyes if he's running off. Oh, well. You know what I mean. Look'em in the eye. Wish'em well. Put a light in your eyes. We're all looking—with love in our eyes.

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