10 Train Trips ‘Til Home

As a child, I spent endless nights awake in bed worrying about the unknown. My hometown, which I navigated on foot as a latchkey kid, was often referred to as the “Murder Capital of the World.” The dilapidated row houses and abandoned lots that surrounded me became the visuals for my nightly fears. A horn from a distant train provided the soundtrack.

From March 2019 to October 2022, I traveled on 10 passenger trains; each journey was a moving meditation. AirPods in my ears, I piped music into my brain to re-program the score while allowing my eyes to become mesmerized by the quickly-materializing rural to urban landscapes. 

During the 30 or so hours I photographed through windows on Pacific Surfliner and Acela trains, I employed photography to help make sense of, and reorder, my childhood narrative. Scenery which once left me feeling unsafe, now enthralled me. And fear, which once held me in its grip, was reorganized and freed.