Saturday, July 4, 2009
I just got back from a long visit with my dad. This picture was taken in New Harmony, before he, Deborah and I went out to dinner and a play there. We stopped at this memorial garden and wandered around first, admiring the way the tree branches seemed to join together to form a rooftop over this quiet, sacred space. It was hotter than hell, as it had been all week, in the 90's, but it felt comfortable here, and it was a feast for the senses. A fountain gave us the gift of the sound of softly falling water; the hostas burst forth lusciously; little benches with feminine curves invited us to sit.
I turned around, camera in hand, and saw my dad standing there, with is arms crossed, standing straight and tall and handsome, and took this picture. In it, I see his essence shining through. I thought, this is him, the eternal him. I see the same man I looked up at when dancing with him, my feet on his, when I was little. The invincible one. The next day I photographed many views of his basement, where he has multiple working spaces where he works on his trains and practices his trumpet. Again, I was struck by it: there he was, the same man. It could be that the spaces in which we do the work we were intended to do, the work that makes our hearts sing with gratitude, show at least as much about us as our faces do, especially when we get older, and we weat time as well as passion on them.