When I was growing up most of our food came from the farm. We bought staples like flour, sugar, shortening, and tea at the store. We might buy the meat for Sunday dinner at the store, but were just at likely to catch and kill one of our chickens. My parents kept a huge garden and my mother canned and canned and canned during harvest season. The fruit we had came from our own trees, and in northeast Texas one of the most reliable fruit producers is the peach. My brother loved peaches. He could never wait for them to fully ripen and would gorge on green peaches straight from the tree. He paid for it with the inevitable stomach ache that followed each of his raiding parties.
The leaves for this lumen print came from my sister-in-law's peach tree, and that has me thinking about family and the role that families play in my sense of place.
I feel anchored here by a long chain of Medcalfs and Rigsbays, but I'm thinking more broadly now. Thinking of all the families that peopled my childhood and how the bonds of kin and friendship and neighborhood connected them.. Thinking about the families that, though the generations may have shifted, still form the backbone of this community. Thinking of the new families that have joined the fold over the years. My thoughts spread out, trying to take in the vast network of human connections, the threads that bind us all into one great family. Then my thoughts contract again, and I find myself remembering the shock of discovery the first time I recognized my father's hands at the ends of my cousin's arms.