I've been visiting New Orleans, am now in Jackson, returning North on Sunday... It's been three years since my last stay here and my days have been filled with the laughter of old friends and stories of remembering.
Raw scenes torn from my heart.
Wounds bathed deep purple, strengthened orange,
the layers of color healing deep and settling into...me.
My first days here I couldn't pick my camera up, then one morning- alone with the light in my dear friend Joanna's kitchen- I couldn't put my camera down. I spent the next two days filling my memory card with painted doorways and reflecting stars, beaded costumes from the Sunday Indian parade and fences covered in flowers, in each picture trying to capture the deep resiliency bursting through, and pouring out of, this city.
(check out the Kid Camera Project's latest endeavors if you're looking to be inspired!)
But, long story short- in a careless moment, the wrong button pressed, I lost my photos.
(Does anyone know how to reverse formatting a memory card?)
And now I'm back to having trouble picking my camera up, as though each picture I take increases the distance between me and my rememberings, as though my journey-not over yet-has already been erased. The experience has me thinking about my photographs, the space they fill and what it means to me....
And my travels here have me thinking about Home, about my sense of place and orientation in the world, about my move back to Pennsylvania the beginning of May, my desire to root deep, beginning with a garden, to paint walls and open windows, to turn compost and put fresh bouquets of flowers in every room.
"Home is the return to where distance did not yet count," writes John Berger.
Perhaps we spend our whole lives remembering what it means to return...