Sunday, March 16, 2008

spring is nigh upon us..
and with it ..
my biannual extremely drippy, sneezy, wheezy, coughy, itchy eye .. ness


oh well, i'm hoping this soon will be over.

the above image is a photo of an old framed photograph i found hanging in dd's mom's (my aunt, my father's little sister) bedroom. the vehicle, the hairdo and glasses should give away the age of that photo. obviously it's a family photo taken in mississippi, i think. conceivably it could be florida. it's a photo of my father, my mother, dd (my cousin) with my dad's hand resting on her shoulder. i'm standing nestled in the shadows with my elbow raised between dd and my blond brother who is stepping away from the group. my mother has her arm drapped around dd's brother.

the first time i saw this photo a few years ago i was startled, because i had never seen it before. i have no recollection of this gathering. of course i was young, under seven since my dad died when i was seven. and since he did die when i was seven, seeing photos of him with us, his family, especially photos i have not seen before ... well, it just sort of tuggs on my heart strings.
anny-lys has been writing about saudade .. a portuguese word ..
i guess this is what i feel at times when i think about my father.

(wouldn't you know i have the sappiest tv music going on in the background just when i'm writing what i fear is turning into a sappy post. i hate sappy .. for me, at least .. for other's it's fine ..)

anyway, when i downloaded this photo onto the computer, i took the time to look at it more closely .. despite it being a photo of a photo.
something was missing..
where was dd's little sister?
the little sister who just very recently passed away?

i wondered why she wasn't in the photo
when i looked more closely again and noticed
a cute pair of bare chubby little legs peaking out from between my brother's outstretched legs.

so, that is where she is..
dd's sis..
my cousin

and then...
i don't know where this memory came from..
as i was looking, all of a sudden this faintest of vague memories stirred to the forefront..
it seems as if
i remember my mother
admonishing my brother to stand still and stay put ..
and he didn't..

oh, well..

that i would remember that..

i wonder if that memory really belongs to that photo?


Anonymous said...

i don't like word verification, but since i've been getting more spam, some of which seems to come with malicious worms, i've implemented it again. hope it works.

Indigo said...

I'm sorry you lost your father at such a young age. It's nice to have found an intact photograph, even though it probably provokes powerful and varied emotions for you.

I sort of consider myself to not have a father. I incarnated this body after the father killed off this body's original personality.

Memory's a funny thing, isn't it? For both of us, I suspect.

foam said...

the brain is a pretty amazing organism, isn't it?
yours did what it had to do in order for the mind and body to survive.

Little Lamb said...

It makes one wonder what we truly do remember.

ANNA-LYS said...

(( HUG ))

SJ said...

My views coincide with yours on sappy. (You had me at sappy *sniff*).

I hate word verif too.

And finding an old photo is always nice. I must do this too digitize my childhood :)

X. Dell said...

It's interesting how memory works, isn't it? You see the legs of your cousin, and eventually remember your brother upstaging her.

I don't know if you mean to do this or not, but there's a subtheme here concerning the very important people in your life who are gone. Usually, when you write about your father, your brother, and now your cousin, it seems to someone like me, a reader who's a latecomer to the life of Foam, that their existence is somehow defined in terms of their passing. In this post, however, I see them all as quite alive.

I don't mean to be provocative, but that really struck me about this photograph, and your description, hazy as it was of that day. In this post (and in an earlier one featuring you and your brother as teenagers) I see your family as alive, vibrant, and beautiful.

st. patrick said...

blessings to you child. i came to banish any snakes i might find, instead i find your memory running on hi-test. i agree with the young man above, your loved ones are alive and well in this space you remembered them so beautifully. happy saint particks day dear one. ( i see you mudder wears green? no pinches here then)

Anonymous said...

i love
old photos,
mine and others --
(used to purchase them)

also old houses (abandoned), ghost towns, old buildings & structures generally -- old as 20C (ancient castles and things don't interest me so much)

but i digress -- finding old family pics is like finding gold, eh? especially when we are in them(!) and especially especially if we can remember them (or even something 'around' them) -- wonderful memories of our own past and our loved ones

wishing you a great week, foam et al

¤ ¤ ¤


Claire said...

What a cool post. I wonder if they were connected?


dd said...

That photo was taken in front of our house in the delta. Your dad a huge impression on me that he loved to cook and made two dishes for us that were new to my five year old palate - SOS and French Toast...

I adored him, you, your family, this visit. It was one of the best. I happen to be wearing maybe the first garment I remember liking - its sort of an artist smock with different colored buttons. I remember wearing it dance class when my dance teacher's husband would pick me up and take me to class. He told my mom he didn't mind giving me a lift since I talked to him just like a grown person. Gee, I wish my conversation skills today were as confident as they were then! Thank you for posting this photo. I'll see if I can get you a better copy the next time I visit.

whimsicalnbrainpan said...

Memory is such a funny thing.

Ruela said...

beautiful portrait.

that car, wow! very cool
I love old cars.

Pink said...

bless you !

foam said...

my whole thesis show as a graduate student was based on the fragments of memories..

((hugs)) 2 u 2 <3

maybe not being into sappy is a libra thing ..
and yea, bring out those childhood photos..

hey st. patricia/err/patrick.. lol
how're them green chickens? ..
yes, that is a young man above .. ;) lol .. you'se funny, chile ..
btw., you couldn't catch me even if you tried to pinch me .. ;P

yeah, we like many of the same things it seems..
..........., and you may NOT turn any of the folkses in this photo into eggheads or waterheads .. ;),
yes, it is interesting what can trigger memories..
conceivably if the foaming has a subtheme it very well could be about memories .. and many of my memories are wrapped around the folks who have passed..
..and i don't think you are being provocative at all. they are alive, vibrant and beautiful in my memories ..

welcome..and thanks for visiting.
i wouldn't doubt if they were connected..

actually now i remember you telling me that the first time i saw that photo a few years ago. what a memory i have .. it sucks.
and thanks for refreshing my memory.
actually, i remember sitting at a table with other children around .. you guys probably .. and watching my dad make piles and piles of pancakes. i remember french toast too..
but i surely can't remember what SOS is.
yes, but you are right. i guess for the times it was unusual to have a cooking dad.
you know.. and i do remember that smock. i also remember that your knee socks were always perfectly straight and never slid down, while your little sis's socks always slid down her legs.

ahh, you've got a connection ...:)
yes, memory is a funny thing.

i loved those cars from that era too.

thank you .. i need it ..
achew! .. :)

ThursdayNext said...

This photo needs to be turned into a short story...its lovely.

The Phosgene Kid said...

Can't be Mississippi or there'd be several overturned pickups in the front yard and a couple hound dogs on the porch.

me said...

hey ... its something special to find these old photos, which sometimes trigger some foggy memories. two brothers i know, who lost their father about 13 years ago, just found out where his ashes were deposited. imagine, for all those years not knowing ... it seems like history, but, then ... the knew knowledge seemed to come out of nowhere and grab these brothers where they live ~ in the present.

foam said...

yes, thursday, i could almost do that now..
cause i'm starting to associate some of the other photos from my early childhood with that incident. some memories of my brother and dd's brother wearing their cowboy gun belts..

well, it was mississippi..
but those turned over pickup trucks and hound dogs are also stereotypical images of many rural places in the south....
and i think rural arizona too ..
no wait .. that would be cacti and ... more cacti .. :P

hey there me .. :)
yes, memories can seem to come out of nowhere and grab you in the present .. i couldn't imagine not knowing where my father and brother were buried..

The Phosgene Kid said...

Lots of Cacti (I even have some in my front yard) and rednecks - the HOA keeps them from parking derelict vehicles in the yard, though.

HLiza said...

Hi Foam, I love this post! Love it when a photo generates thousand of memories, stories and questions..and it touched me that this is one of your only memories with your dad. He sure is very special, I beleive.

ANNA-LYS said...

Ohhh dear Foam, how I wish I had any photo from the past ... it all disappeared in my house-fire. I try hard to picture the photo's from my memory ... great memory, but short in size :-D

foam said...

that's the one thing i would miss should i ever have a housefire ..
the photographs ..
i'm so sorry this happened to you, anna-lys

i do have more memories with my dad .. but they are those vague early childhood memories ..

here in nc it seems okay to park derelict vehicles in the yard. occasionally i'll drive by a rural residence where the kudzu and weeds have overtaken a vehicle.

Indigo said...

It is difficult for Indigo to take off work. We are in law enforcement. I find his line of work difficult. I hope he returns soon. Thank you for your kindness to all of us. He is seeing a therapist on Friday. That is good.

Ruela said...


Merelyme said...

you have me wanting to go back to look at old photos. my father died when i was four and i have no photos of me and him...i barely have any of him. anyways...thank you for inviting us into your memories foam...i feel like i am right there with you.

Anonymous said...

A big hug to you.
I don't know your pain
But I know how I feel about my brother. He died just three weeks old, when I was two - saudade!

LADY LUXIE said...

sad..really sad about your dad. But you have this picture....and..yes..I know exactly what you mean about memories...

When I think of my childhood..sometimes it seems like it wasn't it was some other little girl living my name..

Oh' and I see the little pair of legs there ( hee! hee!)...Sigh'' you've got me thinking of cousins I used to play with but don't see anymore..

Life is a movie...

LADY LUXIE said...

HAppy Easter!

Monique said...

Wonderful how a picture brings back a long forgotten memory. Smells do that too.

Lovely, and a little sad, story.

Indigo said...

Hi Foamy!

Thanks for the encouragement. I think things really are going to be okay now :)


foam said...

good .. :) for seeing a therapist.
but i have to say that even folks in law enforcement get the occasional vacation ..

yes, smells are a really strong memory trigger for me too..

my childhood appears distant to me..
i almost can't remember being under ten ..
if it weren't for photos, i'm afraid it would all be lost.
and a happy easter to you too .. :)

hey there..
back from sunny spain, i see ..
poor little baby brother .. :(

i seem to remember you posting a few old photos on your blog. old photos are amazing.

Anonymous said...

In Spain it was hot hot summer for me, but for the Spanish people it was early early spring.

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