the photoshooter's journey from taking to making

HOW TERRIBLY STRANGE…..

By MICHAEL PERKINS

SOME IMAGES REQUIRE NO WORDS. At least that’s the standard we aim for.

Many others may or may not benefit from what I call accompaniment. Sometimes a few words act as a sort of period at the end of a photographic “sentence”. Other times, a pre-existing sentiment….literary, musical, poetic…. seems somehow to have been just waiting for a picture with which to pair up.

I shot this picture of two longtime pals in just a second, but for two weeks after that, my mind kept looping back to 1968, and the words of a then-young songsmith who found it a real mind stretch to picture himself at the opposite end of his life. And, most likely, many other baby-boomers who read those lyrics, from the Simon & Garfunkel Bookends album of fifty years ago, tried to make the same mental leap. In 2018,  those of us lucky enough to have made that journey to “the other side”, living out those dreams of dotage, may be, even now, able to recall that young writer’s words at will:

*****************

Old Friends / old friends / sat on their park bench like bookends

A newspaper blown through the grass falls on the round toes/ of the high shoes

Of the old friends

Old friends / winter companions, the old men

Lost in their overcoats / waiting for the sunset

The sounds of the city sifting through trees settle like dust on the shoulders

Of the old friends

 

Can you imagine usyears from today, sharing a park bench quietly?

How terribly strange to be seventy……

************

(c) 1968 Paul Simon

Here’s to songs that are worth a thousand pictures, and to pictures that try to return the favor….

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