February 1, 2016
If I am a hoarder, it is a hoarder of experiences. Because I don’t trust my recall, I collect memories. Photographs pressed into scrapbooks and photo albums. Smiling faces transformed into personal artwork behind ornate frames.
We inhabit a small place, and little dwellings have limited wall space. Thus, my collection of memories must be slimmed to allow displays. I overlay older eight by ten glossies with updated smiles. Opening the back of a picture frame is like a mini-time capsule or an archaeological dig site. Years strip away from family members. Eleventh grade, tenth, ninth, and on to kindergarten. Darling smiles lose teeth, exchange milky baby grins exchanged by the tooth fairy for orthodontically-enhanced grins. Styles evolve. Hairstyles change. Maturity replaces baby fullness. I run a finger along the changed profiles, recalling the peculiarities particular of each age, each person.
In previous letters, I’ve mentioned…
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