Hollow point bulletin: Your corner deli has been renamed “Arnolfini’s.” When someone
admits they understand something they tend to say “I see.” I see John Ashbery’s
“life englobed,” from Self Portrait in a Convex Mirror, a
sense that meaning comes in clumps and in the case of security mirrors, clumps that look
a lot like pictures. Is a picture a distortion? Somehow not in the glamorous tondos these
local shops mount to make us seem seen. Compared with the plumb, level seasickness of
retail store display, the mirror-pictures’ distortions read eerily realer, as if gravity
were more effective in images.