The Unbearable Lightness of Being My Father

The Unbearable Lightness of Being My Father

I have a photograph of him from a few years before I was born. The late seventies, Tennessee. A tan, compact man, not more than a hundred twenty pounds, he crouches forward on a speeding horse, he and the horse all muscle, jumping a hurdle of wood that looks like a section of fence. Horse and rider suspended high above the dirt track. Between the moment the shutter snapped open and closed again, and thus, for all time, they defy gravity. My father’s feet tight in the stirrups, legs clinched around the horse’s middle, he floats above the horse, just a feather on its back.

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{“Horse Swimming” photograph by Jenny Sathngam.}

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