Little Worlds


Dee Dee Norton Buckner, Sodom, 1977.


I ran into my old friend Dee Dee at the Doctor’s office in Weaverville. We see each other pretty often, mostly at the grocery store so it was good visiting with her in an unexpected setting. But seeing her reminded me of a photograph I made of her when she was not yet a teenager and I was but a very young man. I had recently seen it on a contact sheet while looking through images for a next project.

As I age, as is the case with a lot of us seniors, my memory isn’t what it used to be. People’s names are especially difficult and I struggle to remember song and book titles, or when I did specific things.

My photographs have been my saving grace in that regard. I can go back through contact sheets and prints and remember where I was, what I was doing, who I was with, the time of year, the clothes people were wearing. Memory, of course, is one of photography’s great
gifts to us.

So, when I came across this photograph of Dee Dee, it took me right back to that summer of 1977 in Sodom when I moved in with Dellie Norton, Dee Dee’s great-grandmother. Dee Dee and I saw each other often then, most every day, and the portrait took me back to who we were 42 years ago, and who we’ve become since. Good memories, hard memories, memories that make us smile, others that
make us cry.