Those thousand words could be any words at all. They could be lies. Wishes. A dead language. What words do you think are in this photograph? Quick–before I tell you and ruin the surprise.
This is my mother in 1965 at the lake in front of my father’s house–the year she got married and three years before I was born. I could bracket this photograph with more befores and afters, but that will do for now.
They say don’t start a story with a description of a photograph. The grand exceptions that spring to your mind not withstanding, I tend to agree. Photographs are still, they edit, and they make us forget what isn’t in the frame. Have you ever known anyone to let a photograph speak for itself? No. The person must always explain it. If you look at this picture of this 21-year-old girl, and I tell you no story, you’ll read a different narrative entirely–and where will my mother be then?
I love this photograph. You’d never know how her life was going to turn out.