Tag: family history

Family Photos: What Kind of Person Am I?

The author (right) and her sister, Helene.
The author (right) and her sister, Helene.

As writer Martha Frankel narrated family photos for her partially blind mother, she saw more through her mom’s eyes.

In every family photo taken of me before I’m 15, someone is holding my arms behind my back, as if I might bolt, as if I might float off into the ether if they weren’t tethering me to the earth. Usually it was my mother, but in a few of the photos it was my sister Helene, and in one, my father.

Asterisk: A Memoir by Oakley Julian


Words and Silence - Front Cover (Border)

UB MFA candidate Oakley Julian’s graduate thesis, Words and Silence, tells a true family story — the good, the bad, the foreign, the familiar. Read two micro-chapters below.

He was the first to make Van Gogh references and bar-brawl jokes after half of his ear was removed in 2003. Beyond those jokes and keeping folks more or less up-to-date on upcoming scans and procedures, there wasn’t much else added to the melanoma discussion for nearly 10 years. As his wife Joy told me, “Walter’s attitude towards this whole thing is that it’s chronic, not terminal. When something pops up, we handle it and then go on.”