From a very young age, I loved Puff the Magic Dragon. It filled my head with the visions of a magical land, of dragons and knights, of a place where maybe I was lucky enough to go on adventures and play without care.
A little under two years into the subscription, a couple months before my birthday, I received a renewal for Shutterbug similar to the one pictured above. I went online and dutifully extended the subscription for another two years. It had, after all, provided me with loads of practical photographic advice about lighting, various filters and techniques for shooting different subjects, and generally been worth the relatively trivial $24 or whatever it cost.
Maybe we can’t feel complete until we know enough to tell our stories. But learning our stories isn’t something we can do alone.
A few years ago, I found this photo slipped into some things I had packed from my childhood home. No doubt my mother had tucked it away for me to find at some later date. The discovery came as a bit of a surprise because for as long as I can recall it was housed, unmoving, in a frame in our living room.
They file into the cramped foyer one by one, assaulted by the gust of hot air from the register overhead and brushing a light dusting of snow from their overcoat, doing their best to calibrate their expression to meet the mood in the room.
Brief hugs and greetings as you struggle to locate their name, relationship and some relevant tidbit of personal information in the distant, dusty recesses of your brain. A task normally quite challenging for someone you met once or twice twenty years prior, made all the more difficult by current preoccupations that surge and recede on their own, outside your control, seemingly at random.