Archive for August 11th, 2009

The legacy of “O”

August 11, 2009
Now that's a nice ceiling

Now that's a nice ceiling

Now that's a nice leg

Now that's a nice leg

News Flash!

August 11, 2009

An all-points-bulletin has just released by the local insane asylum!  There’s been an escape by a professional lunatic, and he’s been sighted at a local residence.  Don’t approach him – he’s extremely deranged and might start spouting exclamations like “I’m gonna knock you into the middle of next week!” or “If you had a brain it would rattle!”

Film footage at eleven!

Have you spotted this lunatic?

Have you spotted this lunatic?

Steps into the past

August 11, 2009
Woman with dog

Woman with dog

There’s an old plantation house that stands deserted in deep woods.  I’ve been there several times, mostly several years ago, with permission of the owner who lives in another city.  The outbuildings are hidden by overgrowth and tall weeds, and everything is in a slow degradation of decay and neglect, heat and desolation.  One old shed had a trunk full of magazines, greeting cards, playbills, and travel postcards.  It apparently belonged to a woman named Adelaide.  There was an envelope with old photo negatives.  I scanned them into my computer, and the images of time gone  by began to appear. 

Yesterday I went  back and took pictures of the front of the house. 

Another day and time

Another day and time

Both pictures were definitely the same place.  The screened porch is an unusual configuration of structural elements with strong horizontal lines.  The same shrubbery still grows by the steps, although missing by the right side of the steps and overgrown on the left.

A silent memorial

A silent memorial

The house is locked up, but you can go onto the screened porch and look in the windows.  There’s furniture inside, and books sitting on shelves.  What happened here?

Front steps to the past

Front steps to the past

It was a hot, steamy day.  The air was broken by an occasional insect sound, then quiet.  One of the outbuildings was a former open-air shed, piled with dilapidated furniture and farm equipment.  A motion at the far end caught my eye, and as I watched, an animal silently stood from its nest created on a heap of debris.  Was it a cat; no, too big for a cat.  It stood half-erect, and I realized that it was a dog, a stray, a castoff living among other castoffs.  It slunk off into the tall weeds and disappeared into the shadows like a dream. 
I stood dismayed in the heat, unable to speak.