© David Moenkhaus - All Rights Reserved 773 612-4166

I photographed a Phoropter today

To say I’m interested in cameras, optics and the science of human vision is to put it mildly. So I kind of get excited when I have to go see my eye doctor. I saw the good doctor today and he always makes me feel good.

He’s the one who has been helping me treat the elevated pressure in my eyeballs that I’ve had for some time now. It’s under control and I feel good, but I go to him to check those pressures about every 6 months.

While I was waiting in the slightly darkened exam room,  I made this image.

© David Moenkhaus - All Rights Reserved 773 612-4166

Phoropter © David Moenkhaus – All Rights Reserved

This is a phoropter, a device to check your eyes that’s in my eye doctor’s office  and it’s in pretty much every eye doctor’s office in the world. But,  it’s always kind of looked menacing to me,  despite the very real fact that it’s completely benign and actually helps people a lot.

According to  American Heritage Stedman’s Medical Dictionary:

“A phoropter is an instrument commonly used by eye care professionals during an eye examination, containing different lenses used for refraction of the eye during sight testing, to measure an individual’s refractive error and determine his or her eyeglass prescription.

Phoroptor is a registered trademark name currently owned by Reichert Technologies, filed Apr 25, 1921 with the USPTO, serial number 71146698. The common name is refractor. The current version is named “Ultramatic RX Master Phoroptor”.

I just like the way it looks.

A poem for today…

Seeing for a Moment


I thought I was growing wings—
it was a cocoon.
I thought, now is the time to step
into the fire—
it was deep water.
Eschatology is a word I learned
as a child: the study of Last Things;
facing my mirror—no longer young,
       the news—always of death,
       the dogs—rising from sleep and clamoring
            and howling, howling,
I see for a moment
that’s not it: it is
the First Things.
Word after word
floats through the glass.
Towards me.

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