Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Long and Spindly Road

A young man with a bright shirt collar walks down a long and spindly road with a camera in his hand. He has decided that he is a photographer, and that as a photographer it is now his duty to take pictures. Thus the camera.

He walks down the long and spindly road, and with his eyes picks out what he will with the camera capture. There are trees, he thinks, and bushes and toads and flowers. There are other things too, he is certain, but for many of the things he sees he does not have a name. He thinks to himself that with a camera names are no longer necessary – a thing does not need a name if it has itself, he thinks. He points the camera at a bundle of things he does not know the names of and, with a simple, sudden click, captures the bundle with his camera. A smile breaks out on the young man’s face and for an instant it seems that his already bright collar gets just a bit brighter. He is happy.

As the young man continues down this long and spindly road he will no doubt have similarly happy experiences. He will encounter further bundles of things that he will photograph instead of name, and his collar will perhaps seem to brighten in several more future instants. Whether his camera or its pictures are ever seen by others, then, is not of any real significance, as if this were ever a question or concern. Let me conclude then by saying that he has taken and will continue to take many pictures, and that each time he does his collar looks for an instant like it has gotten slightly brighter.

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