Monthly Archives: April 2022

i will never understand what’s left behind

I have looked inside a lot of abandoned places, and have photographed all of them. And I do not – and likely never will – understand why some things get left behind.

Did they intend to come back and get the rest of their things? Or did they just say fuck it and walk away from failure, hoping that maybe on another day in another town, they’d get a new coffee cup? Or whatever.

Puerto de Luna, New Mexico
photographed 3.24.2018


It is difficult to imagine a task that’s harder than putting a pink pinwheel on a child’s grave.

St. Libory, Nebraska
photographed 8.30.2014

upon layer

Back when I thought I was going to be a poet, I submitted some poems for a critique. One of the poems was titled “Deserts Always Win” – I’d written it after a drive through the deserts around Victorville, California, where I saw lots and lots of remnants of things that hadn’t worked out – homes, businesses, dreams. And – unlike places with heavy vegetation – plants didn’t grown up over the left-overs, so the defeat was always in clear view of anyone who bothered to look. Apparently, the person who critiqued my work had not ever been to a desert; they took very strong exception to my title and to the premise of the poem.

I’m not saying that unfavorable critique led directly to my becoming a photography. I am also not saying that it didn’t play a part…

Anyway, here’s a hulking ruin in eastern New Mexico; it appears to my photographic eye that once again, the desert was victorious. (Poetic me still stands by that, too.)

Chaves County, New Mexico
photographed 5.23.2021

maybe you and I will not agree

Did this guy break my composition by walking into it? Or should I pretend I planned it that way? Was it wrong to line up the pedestrian across the street with the mannequin? Should more stuff be in focus? Should it have been processed in black and white?

San Francisco, California
photographed 4.13.2019

that welcome seems a bit worn out

Well, sure, the sign DOES say “welcome.” But there isn’t really anything else around to support that, is there?

Irony, I guess.

Roswell, New Mexico
photographed 5.22.2021

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