The Wire gets my vote for the best show in TV history. It’s a brilliant work on so many, many levels, and it’s full of—yes, wisdom.
In the Season Four episode “Soft Eyes,” Bunk condescendingly lectures/hazes Kima on what to look for at a crime scene. He says she’s going to need soft eyes:
If you got soft eyes, you can see the whole thing. If you got hard eyes—you staring at the same tree, missing the forest.
A writer needs soft eyes. Right? Right. Of course. A writer needs soft vision that that embraces the world, caresses the world, acknowledges all the pain and beauty and mystery and despair and loneliness and happiness that exists in the world. You’re a writer with hard eyes? Your vision is going to ricochet off whatever you might think you’re looking at—it’s going to bounce away, deflect, reflect—you might as well be blind. You’re not going to see with hard eyes. You’re not going to understand....