January 21st, 2008

abstract butterfly

when I saw the light in your eyes

I find that viewing pictures on flickr, like love, makes one hope all things and believe all things. I love the way that a beagle or a jetplane can appear on the "others' photos" session, as well as a dizzying array of craftwork, landscapes, portraits, and a charming Dutch toddler at play on my "contacts" page.

Today my friend Greg, who finished high school a year behind me, and has a journal on this very weblog service, sent me a link to his flickr page. There he had posted the National Honor Society invitation from the year he was inducted.

Readers of this journal will not be particularly surprised to find that gurdonark is not in general a joiner, and that his charisma, while not entirely lacking, plays best to a niche audience. In high school, if there were a set of boxes to check to categorize people, I would have been in the "other" or "none of the above" box.

Yet what a flood of memories the other names on the invtiation brought back to me. Randy, the president of the group, now a physician. Mary Ann, who wrote a kind yearbook entry about my "dry wit", who passed away. Jennifer, who moved to Boston to become a banker, but of whom I know nothing. Everyone in my high school had a crush on Jennifer, but I do not know if she knew that. Amy, the perhaps the kindest person in my class, and yet a person I did not know very well.

It's amazing how little I knew these people, with whom I went to school for only two years. It's breath-taking what a surge of memories--lit up in my mind's eye like a house afire-- their names on a 30-year-old invitation brings to me,
considering time and space and distance and how very unimportant I believe I was in virtually every life there listed.