Daniel Adler Looks Through Photo Albums

daniel adlerDaniel Adler‘s step-grandmother sent him a couple of photo albums. In them are weird pictures of parents, grandparents, and his dad as a kid and adolescent.

In one picture my dad is nuzzling my mom on a couch. He has bedhead, a mustache, and is wearing buffalo plaid; she’s got a coffee cup in hand and a surprised look on her face, like “Isn’t it a little early for pictures?” But my grandfather knew a moment when he saw it.

I can see hints of my parents’ expressions that had yet to mature; gesticulations of my father’s when he was an adolescent; dismay on my mom’s face as my dad hugs her when he’s fresh from the ocean; as well as preterite expressions from youth: bliss, shyness, love.

I compare myself to my father, see his handsome jaw and focused eyes, and think how his eyes always have kindness or pride, or silliness, a certain gravity that mine lack. I admire my mother’s slender fingers and her fine bearing, and think about the couple they once made, a lifetime ago. I think about how I’ll look back on my own pictures one day and remember how youthful I was and compare my happiness to what it was then…

 

Published by Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel was born in Brooklyn, NY, and has lived in Portland, Oregon. He studied literature and philosophy at NYU and creative writing at Edinburgh University. He is finishing an MFA in Fiction at University of South Carolina.

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