Thoughts about happening upon a moment and stopping to take that picture

Who ever needs that? And more?

Came up in my f-book memories from a decade ago and continues to be head-shaking laughable.

This is one of the first times I recall trying to compose a photograph with intention. Shot it with a hybrid smart/flip phone that featured a full keypad.

Years removed, looking at this picture, for me it’s not about how crisp or precise the image is or isn’t. It’s about having stopped with the decision to attempt to take an intriguing or entertaining photograph. Taking the time to practice, regardless of however inefficient it might be for the rest of the world – our coworkers and friends and family members – to slow time to take a photograph.

At the time I was selling Christmas trees in Florida. My employer waited a minute or two for…

“Hold on – we’ll be there in a minute…Eddie’s taking one of his pictures. Of a bad cock. Yeah, a BAD COCK! Two bad cocks! And MORE!”

Always stop to take the picture/write the poem/phrase of what captures your attention/ire/amazement/laughter.

And granting the people in your company the luxury to do so is a grand form of patronage.

Elegy for an Uncle Grandfather

The first time we met

my mother’s father,

we were standing in our driveway

greeting them as they arrived

to our 4th of July party.

 

He’d come to visit

from Florida, along with

his second wife.

 

The adults spoke

about travel and directions,

a mediocre steak dinner in Tennessee,

other smalltalk you stumble at

when your father hasn’t visited

in years,

and after a lull

my little brother

proudly announced his first hello,

 

“Hi, Uncle Russell.”

 

“Well I’m not your uncle, Kenny -”

he corrected the child

with a wounded scorn,

“I’m your Gran-Paw!”

 

I was 9 years old,

and I wondered what kind of

ridiculous person

would move away

then show up and

scold strangers

for not knowing

who he is.

 

He died last night

after breaking his

hip and pelvis

in Florida

a few days ago.

 

Today somebody told me

with generic discomfort,

“I’m so sorry for your loss.”

 

For something we all do,

we’re really bad

at death.

 

I didn’t really know what to say and

laughed a little.

 

Made me think of

apologizing to an archeologist

standing over the bones

of an extinct bird

no human has

ever seen.
– what loss?