Tag: Sara Dailey

On Photographing My Mother

Nonfiction by Sara Dailey

In the few pictures there are of her as a child, her smile is a fixed gleam, tongue swallowing both sun and her father’s secret, how a wolf could wear the clothes of a man, his rumpled shirts and scent of farm, have the same big hands that killed chickens and crushed berries into blackberry wine. Looking at the oldest of the photos, taken when she was only five or six, feels to me like staring at a ghost. That girl has gone from her—like a chameleon might shed its skin, this second self has also been shed, like she’s tried to shed all traces of her rural upbringing, her knowledge of farm life and poverty in equal measure.