Wednesday, September 24, 2014

the scenic route

I've always wanted a beautiful life; for things to be rosy hued and filter perfect. Prepped and primed, photogenic. But I've spent the last decade photographing anything else but me and what is mine; pointing the lens instead at places I have been. Maybe it's an attempt, no, a declaration of independence to broadcast to the world - expanding my visibility, my reach. Other times I think it's myself attempting to convince others that I am "well traveled" by having something to showcase, a subtle hint of my inherent narcissism. Photography then becomes a literal accumulation of conviction - that my life has been fulfilling, that all these photos prove its worth

It's been unseasonably rainy. The season has been dragged out and strewn across the streets, littering  the narrow ones by my apartment. Grey skies off and on, autumn quickly settling in. It reminds me of living with T seven years ago, when things that year began to flood. It rained our first night moving in together, I remember taking pictures out of our window. Puddles lit up fluorescent green from the apartments next to us. The orange light of the street lamps, glaring. That apartment didn't feel like mine, or ours rather. It felt like us, temporary. Rushed. Clean tiles, haphazard furniture. Making the best out of a decision that would later turn out to be a burden. 

How relieving then to be in an apartment that feels like home for the first time. With the high ceilings and my bed tucked into a small alcove, I sit by a large window across it as I type this and peer out into the black night, where I can see only the shadows of trees sway because of a lamp in another room. I find myself scared sometimes, it feels as though it has been so long that I have been alone like this. Out of reach, remote. I cleanse my rooms with sage and repeat a prayer - protect me, purify me, purge me of my bad decisions. 

I can't help it, but sometimes I find myself looking over my shoulder more times than I should.

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