chocolate is a verb

colors, flavors, whims and other growing things


1940s Dorothy in Palm SpringsDorothy is about 30 in the photo, on a trip to Palm Springs with her mother, Elsie. Perhaps Elsie’s husband, Max, was there; maybe he took the pictures. It’s hard to know.

I’ve looked at these photos hundreds of times. I turn them over again and again, hoping to discover a fragment of the story. But the reverse is always blank, so I look deeper at the image, trying to decipher something more about the woman who would become my mother.

A while back, I wrote about a photo that was dominated by the looming shadow of my mother’s brother, Bob. Today, after looking at this photo uncounted times, I notice it, too, has a shadow: Elsie.

The metaphor is unavoidable: Elsie and Bob were the twin shadows in my mother’s life. But I am surprised, too, at how easy it is to recognize someone by their shadow alone — and at the mysteriously selective process of seeing, which also offers this circularity: a daughter dominated by the shadow of her mother writes about a daughter dominated by the shadow of her mother.


2 responses to “seeing…

  1. Pat Hunt October 10, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Eerie…. Interesting

  2. marsha addis October 10, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    TOO WOW!!!

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