I Am More Journal Than Picture Album
How do you start a story that is so strange as this? How can you populate a tale with characters who have no faces or images but just names? Or even seek to show the world something, which you, yourself, cannot seem to see? Yes, the world is such a strange place.
I spent seventeen years with my adoptive family who raised me, took care of me at times and composed of my family before the divorce. We had times of good laughter and fun while making up the causual family unit of the US. Of course there were also the bad times, the times that darken my life and make me want to coward off. But out of all those times, all of those events in my life, I just cannot seem to remember my own family's faces anymore.
All of the people who have touched my life or those who were fellow actors in the same scene are also faceless. Sometimes I can remember their names or what they said, perhaps even their voices; but, not the invisible lips that whisper out such stories. And yet.... And yet....
I can remember the Osage Orange tree that grew just before the pool of OU where we learned to swim. The pitch-black lines that marked the floor under the shimmering water under the hazy squarish windows gazing out to the tree and the humid fan that seem to vibrate. And of course across the parking, towards the dorm, was the small gingko tree with its fan-shaped leaves reaching towards the sun.
The sound of the black walnuts plopping down in their fuzzy green coats, staining the hands that reached for them or stumbling you up as you reached for the alien brown shells of cicadas hanging onto its bark. Or the red bud with its three separate small trunks weaving up, its bean-pods curling in designs like the horns of a wild cow.
Sometimes the view is simplistic yet breathtaking such as a couple of foxes playing in the barren soil of a garden that hasn't grown anything for years. Or the shallow hollow, full of mushrooms, where once a pine tree had reached for the sky before being cut down. And I can just remember the neighbor's heavy-headed irises falling through the chinks of a chain link fence border of a tidy yard.
And always the questions: Why the differences of memory here? What faulty part of my mind allows for such limbo? And is it betrayal that I cannot pull up the faces of those who have touched or hurt me in the past? Or is it just mere survival?