About Me

Monday, July 16, 2012

Fragments of Lost Memories

I came across these battered, sepia-toned photographs some time after my father died. We were cleaning out the family home in preparation for its sale.

I know they pertain to my father because I found them nestled at the bottom of a bedroom bureau drawer he used. But that is all I know about them; and there is no one alive I can ask for identification or information.

 These people, probably related in some way, had meaning for my father. I'm especially intrigued by  a missing piece from the one showing an elderly gentleman holding a new-born baby, the jagged edges indicate it was torn apart. As if, my imagination prompts, another individual's image had been deleted at some time. My guess is that the child is the newest member of the family, possibly a first grand-child.

There are other clues hidden in the pictures. I know my father grew up in Quebec, Canada and from the heavy outerwear, my guess is the group picture was taken there. From the formal attire the people are wearing, I surmise the occasion was an auspicious day. The preponderance of black-colored clothing leads me to believe they may have gathered for a funeral, but perhaps not.

I met my father's father and his third wife only one time. I was a child of about eight at the time, so wasn't old enough to make definitive connections of all the family members I met at the time. My recollection of that meeting is vivid. I recall my mother taking my hand to lead to where my grandfather and his wife sat in straight-back kitchen chairs before a wall in some large room. There were other people seated.around the edge of the room. I don't remember what was said; I imagine my mother introduced me as her first-born child. Shortly afterward, I was allowed to join my siblings where they were playing in another area.

I hold onto these two pictures as a reminder of the fragility of memories and as a reminder to take the time to write down my memories for those who will come along after I'm no longer here to supply answers to questions.


  1. Very touching recollection. Have I ever seen these two photos before?

  2. I don't think so. Somehow they came home with me after Dad's house was sold and were dropped to the bottom of a drawer.

    Recently found them when looking for something else.