days ago I wrote a little essay titled "Transience -
about printmaking and life". It said basically what I wanted it
to say, though reading it without being me might make one
wonder why it was written. Well,
On most nice
evenings in the spring, summer, and fall my wife and I walk a
couple of miles through the old neighborhood around our house.
We've been doing this for a many years. We pass a tidy little
house about a mile or so into this walk where the garage door
was nearly always open. Just inside the door were usually two
old men in lawn chairs sitting and talking. They were often
quite animated and always appeared to be enjoying themselves.
I'm sure they were just two old buddies who live in the neighborhood
enjoying a little time before sunset. We don't really know
either of them but they'd usually wave and say hi. Once in a
while only the owner of the house would be there, perhaps
waiting for his friend to show up. There never
seemed to be any other activity in or around that place so I
assume the owner lived alone.
On our first walk this spring the garage door was closed and
there was a big sign in the front yard announcing an estate sale
at the house. Later that sign was replaced by one announcing
that the house was to be auctioned. The old guy obviously passed
away, or something nearly as dire happened to him. We've never seen that garage door open again, and we've
also never seen the other man since. We only know the auction didn't work out
because the latest sign in the yard advertises the house for sale.
We still walk past that house nearly every day. It
undoubtedly held the all the stuff of the old man's life. The same curtains still hang in the windows, but I
assume anything inside that was of value to others got sold
and the rest was cleared out. The substance of a lifetime of efforts
and memories are cast to the wind. It will be like that for many of us,
and if you're a photographer and printmaker... You get the
I think of that old guy and the flow of time and life
I pass his house. Now is all you've got. Use it fully and wisely, and
don't sweat the small stuff.