There’s a wharf here that’s seen better days, a shrimper whose hull now rests on the shallow bottom of the intercoastal waterway that makes Holden Beach an island. If you look to your right while driving the access bridge (best that someone else is driving as the bridge is high curved and only as wide as it needs to be), you’ll see this sad scene immediately below. As I recorded this image from across the way, I could almost hear the boat whispering back at me in a shrimp-boat captain’s North Carolina drawl, “I’m pert near done for, sonny….best snap your pictures fast.” There was a fellow nearby fishing with his son. I watched as he hung his head, burying his face in his hands – a coincidence (probably) or did he too feel the old boat’s words. My parents have reached that age in life where its as though they can better sense the doorway out rather than the doorway in. The aches and pains of bodily deterioration come up in their conversations far more than they would like. The invincibility of youth has faded from memory; its as though they’ve lost some once certain ability to deny the inevitable expiration date. There’s that old joke where the doctor gives his patient a very serious look then answers the question of prognosis like this: “I’m afraid that you are dying; I estimate that you have about sixty years to live.” We can get to that age when it’s no longer a laughing matter, when death’s grip becomes palpable – we can feel its approach. One can take comfort in believing in ‘the here-after,’ but what if it was possble to know beyond believing that death wasn’t the end, but merely a passageway to a new realm of experience? What if the threat of impending death became a continuation of a brilliant hope available right now instead? Wouldn’t that be something worth asking for? Wouldn’t that be worth an honest search to see?
Nikon D90, 200 mm, F/22, Gitzo tripod, Bogen head; 3 images processed and textured in photoshop CS5 from exposures plus and minus two stops of 0 EV. Holden Beach North Carolina USA. All Rights Reserved.