Ghosts

snowbirdHallMirror

This is a photograph of the end of a deserted hallway in a concrete ski lodge. It is very still. The block of elevators are at rest. The overlarge wall mirror echoes an empty corridor of worn grey carpet stretching down the hall. Harsh artificial lighting illuminates the absence, making deep dark hollows daylight will reveal tomorrow. It’s three in the morning and everyone is in their rooms. I took this while on vacation. I do my best work on vacation, because I do not expect familiar, I am open to the possible.

In these absences I take photographs of ghosts. As in this photograph my parents are not there, very persistently not there. My mother, in a long slim dark blue dress with a fake mink brown fur collar, stands stiff with indignation staring straight ahead, stubbornly waiting for the elevator. My father, who looks so sharp and certain in his tailored suit, ignorant in his drunken willingness to please, shifts near her, trying to understand again. The way they argue, like annoying mosquitoes, trying to make their words invisible. She speaks to the elevators, he to his feet.

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