love people. take pictures. write things down.

photos and words by Caroline

Month: December, 2012

newtown

I read that his mother said, “Adam,

it is not good to for you to be alone.”

And I wonder–did he respond with a semi-automatic

argument? Or was there silence, like the song

Paul Simon played at the funeral

of a 27-year-old hero who still slept with a teddy bear?

.

Either way, we weren’t listening.

recent photography

for a blog with “take pictures” in the title I haven’t posted a lot of photography. Here are some of my favorites from the past month or so. This post is also to make up for the fact that I haven’t written anything decent in a while.ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

inverness.

I couldn’t write it then–

(but I can now–why is that?)

–couldn’t see then that your room had only three walls and I couldn’t

hear the creaking

floorboards (hiding something?) and I fell for

the slant of the headlights passing

all night through the basement

window over two sleeping humans who had walked

through a greener country

with vinyl over our heads

(don’t worry, it was kind of beautiful)

although

frost covered us overnight

and someone was always watching.

mom jeans and running shoes.

note: you’ve probably already read this. originally wrote and posted this on 10/18/2012 on noonecanfathom.tumblr.com. i wanted it here too 🙂

Even though I am only a nanny, I often think I understand motherhood when I feel crazy love coupled with complete frustration for three-year-old Wyatt, my charge for 6-8 hours every weekday. I can scoop up the little perfectly-bred Arian beauty and all I want to do lay on the couch all day with him. His little sweatpants are soft and he can sit on my stomach without crushing me and sometimes he even holds my hand and plays with my hair, trying to make a ponytail. This extended snuggling may require watching four consecutive hours of Dora the Exlplorer, but who cares? I have a perfect fun-size cuddle buddy! Then, just as our hands meet in the bowl of shared cheese popcorn, he will tell me that he hates my sweatshirt. He doesn’t like purple, and I should wear orange tomorrow. He also wants chocolate milk NOW even though I just made him waterered-down white grape juice, which I know is his favorite. So I turn off the TV and make him practice learning the days of the week, so that next time he insults me he will actually know that tomorrow is Wednesday. He kicks me with his adorable little crocs on and yells, “You’re mean” and “Mommy said no!” which are the meanest things he knows to say.

I take Wyatt to the library and I wonder who perceives me to be a mother of a three-year old. Wyatt doesn’t let go of me the whole time we are there, but its not like he is accidentally calling me, “Mommy.” On the days when I know Wyatt and I will be going out in public, I actually plan to wear a baggier pair of jeans, instead of my beloved leggings as pants.

I am not too thin to be a mother. Everyone around here is thin, because everyone is a runner. I used to hate the monotonous activity, but now I feel as though if I don’t run, I am not paying my dues to the jogging god of Grand Rapids, and that all of the young women in spandex at D&W will know I skipped a run. If you aren’t at church on a Sunday morning around here, you sure as hell better be jogging. About a year ago, my best friend Rachel ran a marathon. She ran through my church service and my three cup of coffee. She ran for four hours, became a saint of Grand Rapids with an aluminum foil blanket, and spent the next three days limping up and down the stairs. It looked like torture, but she was admired by all, including myself. She loved the photos I took of her, frozen mid-sprint, smiling—-head-to-toe in Nike.

I mostly run as an attempt to teach myself some self disciple, but I also run with Wyatt, around the house playing Power Rangers and around the local park—-the only place where a mother with a child of her own once asked me, “Is he yours?”

“I’m the nanny.” I replied, which in retrospect sounds cinematic, as though every child has a working mother and a nanny, and this was the Upper East side of Manhattan. I could have said, “I am his nanny,” or even, “I am hisbabysitter.” But then again I am no longer the fourteen-year-old who tucks a couple of little kids into bed and then spends the majority of her work time in front of the WB watching shows about teenagers having sex and playing basketball so that she has something to talk about with her friends at school. Any young teenager will tell you that it is always best to get a babysitting job on a night when one of those beautiful and forbidden shows is on. You’ll suddenly understand what all the girls are talking about in front of their lockers in the morning.

Now, given glorious grown-up freedom, I come home from a day of running around and can watch anything I please! So I watch sit in bed alone watching reruns of Sex and the City, and text my mother about it the next morning.

arts & leisure

home is where the time is

in lepoard-print journals and crushed shoeboxes

photographs with orange spots (water damage from the flood)

I smooth the creases and my father says, “I don’t remember that.”

or, “were we on vacation?”

.

home is where the Times is.

pieces of yesterday, scattered sections of weeks ago–

a slice of October still sits in the living room.

seasoned with eraser crumbs (crossword abandoned.)

.

I read the Sunday Styles

in my church clothes (jeans are O.K.)

and later with my mother under the Costco blanket.

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We forget the wine in the freezer

Accidentally preserving something that improves with age.