Imagery of a Brain
We are both tangible creatures with tangible brains that,
if scalps were removed, would appear the same.
But turn your thoughts to thoughts—brain
function—the intangible processes we inherently
assume work the same in others’ as in our own.
Here, an fMRI machine to make the intangible
tangible: images on screens. Concrete.
Place us side by side. Retrieve images
to show neural differences. We can focus
on a specific thought or picture if you like,
or at least, I can try. You’ll see my focus flicker
coloured lights on the screen. Different.
Abnormal? Perhaps. Send her to a psychiatrist,
psychologist, pharmacologist, pharmacist
in the end. I’ll cut straight to there.
Wait. Attempt to make some sense of this (pre-drug) fMRI image,
metaphor, analogy, while I pretend to contemplate
the meaning of it all, but in reality I have passed the thought of how those lighted areas remind me of ink-spots,
beyond how I can see so much in an ink-spot that when asked, “what can you see?” my brain stutters and I can give no answer–kind of like that symmetrical
image of the vase/face in profile (it’s both, can’t you see?). My brain flickers between the two perceivable images until I can’t stand to look any more–and then here the image of an old crone, no, young lady, old crone, young lady, my mind argues like two people who each see one image so to them the alternative cannot exist–
But reality is they both exist, simultaneously. They just don’t exist here, in front of me, or you, and all I’m left with is imagined eye-strain,
and a real headache; pain that may adjust
the image: those scans that fMRI produced.
But I’ve forgotten my point, a common occurrence
when one’s brain sparks lights of activity
as randomly as mine likes to.
Something about tangible similarities
and intangible (yet provable) differences which we
forget exist because our brain can only function
as its wiring allows it and we forget
others’ wiring is most likely different.
Which is OKAY.
We are both flesh and blood and breaths
and the same. But, not.