I love taking pictures and as anyone knows who follows this blog, I love to crawl around in the shrubberies to do it but as I’ve lost people as I grow older those aren’t the photos I love best. I have a digital photo frame on my desk and it’s loaded with hundreds of photos and the ones I love best are the un-posed pictures of people I love. In particular the ones that have died that I caught in intimate moments.
The ones of two friends talking, of a group of us sharing a meal and laughing. Pictures of friends celebrating ritual on the beach as we do every year. People who are relaxed and just living. The ones that you can see their soul in their eyes. When people pose who they really are is masked and not captured. So-called primitive people aren’t wrong when they think a picture captures a soul, a good photo does, at least for a moment, there is a glimpse of who they truly are. When they are gone often that is all you have left to remember them by. The ability to walk back into that time and space where the person was alive and vibrant if just for a second is precious because for that second, they live.
Taking pictures is magic, something happens that sometimes I am lucky enough to catch. Things like laughter and joy, peace and love and in one memorable ritual… fairies. We did invoke them and when I got home there they were. Orbs of many colours and only around the priestesses wearing wings. That has never happened in all the other rituals I’ve ever taken pictures at.
So I take as many pictures of friends as I can as they live. As they dance at Faire, as they read their books or telling stories, as they sing. I take pictures at our rituals when they shine the most. I take pictures at feasts that we share. I take pictures of our adventures. I take pictures because that’s all I will have someday of them and someday something that I will leave behind of me.