An Old Photograph: 99-Word Flash

This week’s prompt over at Carrot Ranch (www.carrotranch.com) was to write a story in 99 words (no more, and no less) about a vintage photograph. This pedometer geek writer is not sure when a photograph becomes vintage, but the photograph, about which the following story is written, is close to a hundred years old (and the people now exist only in the minds of those who still remember them).

An Old Photograph

It was a formal portrait of a mother sitting with her children all around her, and the youngest one on her lap. One of them was a boy in knickers, copping a pose of nonchalance, his fist under his chin and a most serious look in his eyes.

I first saw this photo when I was working on a family album of these children, their children, and grandchildren. This was my dad’s family: his mother, his brother, and his three sisters. I love the photo of my grandmother, my uncle, my aunts, and my dad when they were young.

~Nancy Brady, 2021

About pedometergeek

A pharmacist by profession, a haiku poet by nature, I read and write. I have a book of haiku, Ohayo Haiku, and another somewhat alternative haiku book, Three Breaths, but write other genres. I also read...lots of novels! My favorite is, and remains, Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged but I am also a big Harry Potter fan. I truly am a pedometer geek strapping on my pedometer as soon as I awaken.
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14 Responses to An Old Photograph: 99-Word Flash

  1. What a difference, these rare and special photos and nowadays we snap off a picture several times a day with our phones. I wonder if there was a special occasion that day to warrant a photo.

    Liked by 1 person

    • D. I don’t know whether it was a special occasion or not. According to Dad, they had just moved and they had photos taken. There is another one of the all of the kids in a row, stair-step fashion, from oldest to the youngest. While I have copies of both, I love the one I posted. That photo graced the cover of the album I made for my extended family. Somehow, it seemed appropriate.

      I have to say I have never taken a selfie. In fact, my cell phone is a flip phone and I rarely if ever take photos with it. My husband and I use our DLSR cameras when we take photos.

      Take care.

      Like

  2. Charli Mills says:

    What a great shot! I love the haircuts, too. Everyone looks so dapper.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jules says:

    I have an old photo of my Father with his Father… I think they only too photos on special days ‘back then’.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I actually have some photos of my Dad and his siblings that are not so formal. Dad always was posing with some attitude. There probably weren’t that many, but when I put out the call to all my cousins and sisters for this project, I got some real gems. Only two of them didn’t send me photos for the album. One of my cousins, who got dressed down by his mother (my aunt) for not sending any, and my younger sister. Fortunately, my aunt provided some of the ones of her siblings when they were young, It was quite a project, taking me months to complete, but overall, everyone appreciated it (I think).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jules says:

        I’ve sort of been designated a keeper of such things… but not enough family around anymore to tell me who is who.

        (Hardly any from my own side, though I have relatives that have some I’d like to have – those folks have chosen more to live in the present and aren’t really concerned with my (or their) past.)

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: The Old Photograph « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  5. I like how you ended your flash piece for this one. It doesn’t matter what the past looked like, just who your father is now to you. They’re curious things, old photographs, but we always return to the present, where life truly lays. Wonderful take on the prompt, Nancy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks you, Rebecca. That’s a kind thing to say. I had several old photos that I could have used, and it would have had a similar bent. I only wish that Dad and Mom were still around. Because they aren’t, I have photos and memories.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. JP, my older sister has all the genealogy charts from my grandmother and great-aunt. They were passed down to Dad, who tweaked them and filled out data of people that my grandmother and/or great-aunt.ignored because they didn’t like them. I really don’t worry about the past, but I wanted to do this project before my sons didn’t know any of these current relatives. I figured it was easier doing it while people were still living, rather than trying to re-create the past. Many of these pictures will not mean anything in the future except for the fact that I labeled the people in the photos and someone somewhere might be able to say, “Oh, that was my grandmother and my aunt and my cousins.” Silly, I know, but at the time I did it, an aunt and uncle (Dad’s siblings) had already died, and since then, one of my cousins have died. I only wish I had done a project like this for my Mom’s side of the family. Alas…

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  7. Rebecca,
    How kind of you. My sympathies to you for the loss of your dad.I feel for you, and I hope you have cherished memories and photos to remember him. I don’t think the ache ever truly goes away, but having memories help.~nan

    Like

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