History in a Box
January 4, 2009, 11:59 pm
Filed under: Blips, dreams, history, hope, life, me

I began a little book with old pictures of my Grandparents. I refuse to die with a box of pictures by my bed. I know if I don’t showcase them in a way that shows how extremely special they are to me they will end up at a flea market and later be found in thousands of frames for sale at the local box store. Basically forgotten. Every time  I thumb through them I am overwhelmed with so many thoughts and questions. Some of the people I don’t even know, like this little boy from about the 60’s. There are three pictures all the exact same shot in the box, and why? He is a cute little thing but upon closer study I realize he has dirty nails and rotten teeth. What kind of life did he lead? Why didn’t his mother go over every detail and make sure his nails were clean? Back then, judging from the stories my Grandmother told me, getting your kids pictures professionally taken was a big deal. She once told me her best friend who lived down the street had to keep wire over the baby’s crib to keep the rats away. And another lady that just lived nearby would drape dirty pee’d diapers around to dry and reuse them. My Grandfather was married before my Grandmother and he had a baby with her. Well the baby died and was buried in an unmarked grave. Once he was married to Gram they saved and saved to have a tiny little marker put where she was buried. Twenty five dollars. So I know that in that neck of town back then that pictures were a precious thing and I’m going to guess in the 1930’s alot of people didn’t have such a privilege as they do now.

But what eats at me the most is that she (gram) was young once. They were all young at one time. They had a good time together and I believe that she was relatively happy. She fell in love and had babies and struggled with the same issues I struggle with myself. Just slightly different.

My grandfather died before I could remember him but I know as sure as the dirt I stand on that his green thumb was passed all the way to me. I know him every time I turn the earth and plug in a tomato plant. I know the joy he felt when he found that perfect rose, the largest tomato and the prettiest butterfly. He took a pile of pictures of his garden in 71′. And they have just kind of hung around in a drawer or a box for those thirty eight years. But not anymore, they are going to be displayed as a piece of my history. He was a horrible photographer, but to me they are everything I know of him. There is one where you can just read Grandma’s face, he handed her a tomato and said to hold it up so he could get a picture of it. He cut her off from the neck down and barely got the tomato in the frame. But it was good enough that you could see Gram sitting there with a look of “Oh I’ll humor him this time!” on her young barely wrinkled face.

I keep beating myself up. I didn’t say goodbye. If I just would have been there for those last few minutes I wouldn’t have to think of the last time I saw her in that bed. She was gone. Forever. It has never meant more to me that word. Forever never seemed so long. Till that tiny little moment, that speck in my life where I lost her. She’s better off, but I should have been there. I should have. I just should.

I dream of her, and the last time I woke feeling kind of like I got to see her one more time. I put my arms around her and then I woke up. And I realized it was just a dream. A trick of my mind. A way to ease the pain I don’t think will ever go away. I look at the past in these photos and wish that I could just climb into them and hear what they are saying. I want to know where they went when the camera was tucked back in it’s case. I want to be with them one more time. I don’t want them to be stuck in a box in the corner of a room.

Collecting dust on my soul.

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1 Comment so far
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That was sad reading.

Comment by urspo




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