In 1976, The Missing Piece Meets the BIG O was published — a minimalist, maximally wonderful allegory at the heart of which is the emboldening message that true love doesn’t complete us, even though at first it might appear to do that, but lets us grow and helps us become more fully ourselves. It’s a story especially poignant for those of us who have ever suffered from Savior Syndrome or Victim Syndrome and sought a partner to either fix or be fixed by, the result of which is often disastrous, always disappointing, and never salvation or true love.
Silverstein tells the tale of a lonely little wedge that dreams of finding a big circle into which it can fit, so that together they can roll and go somewhere. Various shapes come by, but none are quite right.
In these unbefitting rolling partners, one can’t help but recognize the archetypes implicated in failed friendships and romances — there are the damaged-beyond-repair (“some had too many pieces missing”), the overly complicated (“some had too many pieces, period”) the worshipper (“one put it on a pedestal and left it there”), the self-involved narcissist (“some rolled by without noticing”).
…eventually, calling to mind Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s definition of love: “Love does not consist of gazing at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction.” Watch it on You Tube.