“Companionship”

Old man sitting on park bench with pigeon looking indifferent central park riverside drive upper west side

Riverside Drive Park, November 2004. New York City, NY

I had seen him sitting in place so many times before – a fixture in the park for years – but never had he seemed quite so lost in thought… For a moment, and out of raw respect for his pensive pose, I actually resisted the urge to raise my camera…a very fleeting moment.

Over the years, I have revisited this image countless times and always wonder just what consumed him so… I have wondered if, in that one moment, he was truly ensconced somewhere in the middle distance or simply as indifferent to my presence as to that of his friend. And while I never tire of the inherently comical nature of the composition, there will always be something serenely focused behind his gaze…perhaps compounded by the mystery of the unknown, but hopefully the product of a lifetime sufficiently full of moments far more amusing to him than this one…

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