Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Deepest Cut

In a past post I talk about photos and the kinds of feelings they evoke in us. I thought about this as I was rummaging through photos for a recent interview about Breastless in the City. One of the photos requested was of Paul and I. I cringed as I read the request. Then I wondered where I could have hid them. Then I thought about how I didn't want to look. It would be too hard to see his face again, to see us together, too hard to remember. In the past 15 years that he has been gone there has not been a day that he doesn't cross my mind. But looking at pictures of him is like dumping some alcohol in a fresh cut. I knew it was going to burn. It would burn my heart.

As I opened the closet and dug out the box I felt dizzy and my heart began to race. I grabbed handfuls of disorganized photos from my entire life hoping the sting wouldn't last too long. I wanted it to be quick like ripping off a bandaid. I watched photos drop to the floor around me and there it was...the picture of my dad and I circa 1971. I was about 2 years old at the time. It was Easter Sunday in the Bronx. I had hair in my eyes and was crying. My dress was mint green. He had his arms around me trying to stop my tears.

So as I was searching for a photo of Paul out fell my dad. I wasn't expecting that. Next week it will be a year since he died. I quickly realized that my box o' photos is crammed with dead people. All of the family I lost and miss so much. That is why the box is hidden away, why it is always closed. Just as I wish sometimes I could close away that part of my life. Because maybe the pain would go away...

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