Showing posts with label photographs and poetry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label photographs and poetry. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


( Photograph by Louanne Watley)
William Everett retired from 35 years of teaching ethics in order to write and make furniture in Waynesville, NC. He is the author of Red Clay, Blood River (2008) and numerous poems, the most recent appearing in Fresh. He blogs at
Remembering Rightly
I have been salvaging our old photographs by digitizing them for future generations. In my efforts I have been brought back to the ways we try to organize our lives between our past and possible futures. In our imaginations we enter a world of story untouched by ordinary history. I tried to catch this slip between the folds of objectivity in this little poem:

There is a space between chapters,
a crack in the spine,
an empty space
where two pages meet
and disappear
into a hidden abyss
where things are sewn invisibly together.

Some memory is driven by pain, fear, and anger. We have memories that we seek to flee, avenge, or obliterate. Other memories are driven by love – memories of joyous events, Edens of new beginnings, of children, spouse, and friend. In my own case, the old slides produced this poem driven by a memory of love.

Like a Russian doll
she wears each passage of her life in polymorphous coats.
She is the wise companion, etched by years of circling suns,
the woman burnished silver with accomplishment,
the mate with auburn hair and radiant eyes,
the holder of the household lamp,
the mother of the squirming baby nestling at her breast,
the college ingénue with voice of lark and witty tongue,
the pigtail girl in the taffeta dress,
the urchin hanging from her knees and laughing at her dad.

They hide,
a manifold of nesting forms
around the holy light within
each one the doll,
each one the woman that I love.

For some, the “crack in the spine” is full of fear and pain, for others, joys and Russian dolls forgotten in the daily grind. Most of us will find a mixture where we seek an alchemy to compound futures out of right remembrance.
William Johnson Everett
465 Harriett's Trail
Waynesville, NC 28786
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