Lost Pictures

Somewhere in a box there are pictures of me as a young girl, when my hair was still more gold than brown, and my mother made most of my clothes. I’ve never really cared for pictures of me, but suddenly I want the one of me and a childhood friend in school girl costumes – you know, like when you put the hood of your sweatshirt over your head, and tie the strings under your chin, but slip your arms from the sleeves so that it’s a cape, and your ruler is a ray gun, and the cheap mask leftover from Halloween turns you into Supergirl or Wonder Woman or whatever.

Somewhere in a box there’s a picture of me and a boy my age dressed up like superheroes, with blankets and towels tucked into the collars of our t-shirts.

We were superheros who fought against JAWS because it was the ’70s, when the movie was new enough, scary enough, to keep our young toes on the sand when we went to the beach, and instead of pretending to fight with plastic light sabers (because they didn’t yet exist) we argued about who’s house the radio guy meant when he said, “Coming soon to a theater near YOU!”

Somewhere in a box there are pictures, but in my heads are the movies and the memories and the taste of innocence that lingers at the back of my mouth and the scent of childhood that wafts across my dreams.

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Lost Pictures by Melissa Bartell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.