Monday, September 17, 2012

The Four Faces Of Bob White

Bob White returned recently from another guide season in Alaska and posted four photos of his transformation from "Guide Bob" back to "Artist Bob" on his Facebook page.  I dropped the four photos into this square collage and sent it to Bob which sparked a few lines of stellar narrative which shows that he is a talented wordsmith as well as an artist.  Thanks again, Bob.

Another Season In Alaska 

One arrives clean-shaven and full of vitality; a deep reserve of energy that is slowly drained by long days, cold winds, and soaking rains.  Shaving becomes just another chore, and it's quickly forgotten. Besides, I tell myself, my beard will protect me from the elements.

My beard seems to grow more quickly each summer...and whiter. My buddies, the young guys, call it, "chrome", but they're just being nice. Or perhaps they're afraid I'll call them out on the summer’s worth of fuzz that adorns their upper lips!

As it grows, my beard becomes a part of me, a shield of sorts, behind which I hide my exhaustion, loneliness, and frequent impatience.

Many of the fishermen I guide have known me no different. Spring, summer and autumn happen in as many months, and we rush towards the season's end, my beard and me.

Now, I'm home and it's time to shave, to step out of my armor, because my wife and children know me no different.

But afterwards, when I look in the mirror, I see there is a difference. The lines etched around my eyes are a season deeper.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good idea on the photos, apparently inspiring the subject as well. Loved his interpretation of the visual.