Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

becoming what I mean February 25, 2013

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:16 pm
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“I will not become what I mean to you.”

-Barbara Kruger

I read this quote in the book Blueprints for Better Girls (which was painful to read and not about bettering anyone).  The quote is interesting.  I suspect that one could ruminate for a long time on all the permutations it triggers.  I think it will mean something new to you almost every time you consider it.

Kruger is an artist who creates these slogans as a kind of anti-establishment declaration, meant to challenge the viewer.  You can read more about her in this article from Mother Jones magazine.

My first connection to this quote was to recall a youthful romance.  It could have been spoken by the young man.  In reality, he did not become what he meant to me.  And yet he did, because I fashioned him in the image I desired, and so he remained in memory, inviolate.

My children could say this to me.  I could say it to them.

In some ways, it’s a fatalistic thought.  We are bound to disappoint.  In other ways, it’s a liberating thought.  We are imperfect, and accepting that, we are free to be whoever we grow to be.

What does it mean to you?

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