West Milton, Pennsylvania. July 12 2012.

On July 12, I got in the car with Frank Armstrong and we headed west. The destination - Austin, Texas.
The goal - stay off the highways, find photographs, avoid heatstroke. We spent something like 20
days on the road. Frank had his new Pentax in tow and very enthusiastically put it through its
paces; I borrowed a sweet Mamiya 7 and shot a bunch of film. We hit I-84 west, blew through
Massachusetts, Connecticut, and a bit of New York, and then got off the interstate and started
wandering the back roads. Above is the first image I shot. After a month of unbearable heat,
hit-or-miss dining, and tequila in paper cups, we returned to Massachusetts, tired and dirty but
very satisfied. Frank already has the itch to get back on the road, and to be honest, so do I.



It's a relief to finally see all of these images together. This project has been in progress and in my head
since I was 24 years old; I started shooting it over two years ago. I've never worked this way before,
where I don't even see any negatives until weeks or months after they were shot, and it was interesting
and refreshing. The power of hindsight is something that had an important role in this project.

The intention has been to make a book all along. I'm going to take a couple of days off to get started on 
a couple of other things and then I'll get going on the layout and the writing. This blog has been a great
sketchbook, a nice visual bulletin board for the images and some things I was thinking about and
reading/listening to while I worked on getting everything scanned. I'm hoping to add a lot more original
text to the book, so that's what I'll be working on starting Monday.

In the meantime, I have a lot of film from my travels with Frank Armstrong this summer that's been
waiting patiently. I also photographed my friend Adam and his wife Morgan on the lobster boat he 
skippers and she sterns on in September. So, there are more images on the way, and I truly hope
that will always be the case. Thanks so much for all of your support and for following this weird 
narrative as I unfolded it. Feel free to contact me at cadeoverton@gmail.com with any questions,
comments, feedback, or print requests. Anything on this blog is available in print form, so get in touch
if you are interested and we'll talk.

Love always,



Richmond, Virginia. April 2012.

The End.

"Try to swallow while you're still young
that your dick's too short to fuck the world"

-Titus Andronicus, "In a Small Body"

"It's not that I wanted to hurt you
I just didn't care if I did
It is not that I just forgot you
Also, I forgot everything else
It is not that I do not love you
it's just that I hate everyone
It's not that I wanted to hurt you
I just didn't care if I did
what I did, I did - who I am, I am
Then a stupid kid, now a stupid man"

-Titus Andronicus, "Tried to Quit Smoking"

"I leave Sisyphus at the foot of the mountain. One always finds one's burden again.
But Sisyphus teaches the higher fidelity that negates the gods and raises rocks.
He too concludes that all is well. This universe henceforth without a master
seems to him neither sterile nor futile. Each atom of that stone, each mineral flake
of that night-filled mountain, in itself, forms a world. The struggle itself toward the heights
is enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy."

-Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus


Austin, Texas. April 2012.

One day, one roll of film.
It's almost like you knew it was almost all over.

Silence hovers in the yards, leaving no pages with writing on them, that thing we'll later call the work.
Silence reads letters sitting on a balcony. Birds like a a rasp in the throat, like women with deep voices.
I no longer ask for all the loneliness of love or the tranquility of love or for the mirrors. Silence
glimmers in the empty hallways, on the radios no one listens to anymore. Silence is love just as your
raspy voice is a bird. And no work could justify the slowness of movements and obstacles.”

-Roberto Bolaño, Antwerp


 Nashville, Tennessee. February 2012.

Cedars of Lebanon State Forest, Lebanon, Tennessee. February 2012.

Are you running, Mr. Overton? Are you trying to hide?
Do you think the forest will give you peace?
You're a child here; your lack of self-worth is an insult to these trees
this place is so much more than you will ever be.

"And in saying you loved me
made things harder at best
and these words changing nothing
as your body remains
and there's no room in this hell
there's no room in the next"

-My Chemical Romance "Early Sunsets Over Monroeville"

"A seam across the sky
as if it was torn
the sky is filling
with flocks and swarms
they burst through the branches
they tumble and fall
little gods surveying their worlds
examining it all

My wings are dusted
with frost and cold
for a little thing like you
I'm too heavy a load
you'll struggle and falter
amble around
just follow some other storm
'cause I'll only weigh you down"

-Murder By Death "Good Morning Magpie"



New Orleans, Louisiana. February 2012.

Haunted by the ghost
of the boy you used to be

St. Louis Cemeteries (pictured above is St. Louis Cemetery No. 1)


Nashville, Tennessee. January 2012.

Early in the year you spend much of your time "commuting" between Austin and Nashville
at one point you consider moving there
your attempts at sanity and normalcy plummet like crippled aircraft
and the weight of your instability drags the wreckage to the bottom of the ocean

Every now and then the sun comes out and spreads itself over the dead earth and you do your best not to blink


( )

"Other countries have tremendous pasts that they carry on their shoulders,
and that they pretend or actually do take care of.
In America people go forward, and that's not a gentle sport."

-Robert Frank, 1996


Austin, Texas. January 2011.

Suddenly you're home more than you're used to
your new apartment is a closet so you wander around all the time
unsure of what to do, where to go
still jealous of everyone who gets to just stay put and live.

These unexpected and aimless homecomings are a bad sign
later you'll know this was the beginning of the end
for now you draw maps in your head, circling the blocks and petting stray cats
defining a home that is thus far yet to be.


Fort Lauderdale, Florida. January 2012.

I can't make it” is my only thought as I keep going, which thought is like phosphorescent negative red
glow imprinting the film of my brain “Gotta make it”—
Desolation, Desolation
so hard
To come down off of”

-Jack Kerouac, Desolation Angels


Austin, Texas. January 2012.


East Syracuse, New York. January 2012.

Wake up
it's beautiful outside


 Columbia, Tennessee. January 2012.

Nashville, Tennessee. January 2012.

The new year finds Tennessee barren and cold
you weren't even home long enough to recover from your hangover
but in Nashville there's the welcome hospitality of an old friend
one who understands the value of a fridge full of beer.


Fort Lauderdale, Florida. December 2011.

Twenty straight days on the road between Thanksgiving and Christmas
Nothing feels right
you're working at beach resorts by the time most people
are flying home to their families
and there's nothing festive about South Florida
a cabbie tries to rip you off
you end up in a shouting match with him on an airport curb
a family with small children looks on in amazement
you watch another sunset through the airplane window
as the plexi slowly gathers a quiet patina of ice.



Knoxville, Tennessee. November 2011.

"And it's a battered old suitcase
to a hotel someplace
and a wound that will never heal"



Santa Ana, Texas. October 2011.

It's a long drive to Abilene
but West Texas is beautiful when the sun is rising
and this place seemed so lonely in the quiet afternoon



Scottsdale, Arizona. September 2011.

"Jesus, I wish you were here. The desert is beautiful and at the end of the day the sky's on fire but the
air is strange and the city is a flickering mess of flat hostility. The casino I'm here to shoot allows
smoking so I've been down there playing the penny slots and losing a whole lot and chainsmoking and
watching all of these miserable people getting fatter and losing their money and if you were here I bet
you'd laugh and when you did I'd see your teeth and the way your eyebrows raise a little and I'd be
happy for an instant, an instant I wish I could live in forever... anyway the beds here are comfortable
too, I bet you'd like them. It's hotter'n hell but there's a huge pool and you could just float while I went 
to work, if you were here... the horizon is so far away, the landscape is all weird colors, kind of pink,
the mountains in the distance are comforting in that unmoving hazy way of theirs and I woke up in a 
pool of sunlight and had coffee on a balcony again and one of these days we'll do that together in some
nice hotel far away from everything and I miss you and your little smile and the way it moves your ears..."

You wake up with a sore throat from smoking too much. Your clothes stink.
The bed is bathed in sunlight but all you can see is how dirty the window is.
There are phone calls you never made and there's someone floating away from you
there are things you should have said that would come naturally to you if you'd just let them.
It's already too late
you're gambling, more than pennies and nickels
pretending like you don't have everything to lose
you've been lost for so long you've stopped trying to find your way home
keep drinking
pretend you're not anyone at all

Sometimes you fantasize about doing that clichéd thing you see in movies
where you fall in the pool face-first wearing all your clothes
preferably a tie and dress shoes for maximum effect, and you float around in slow motion
having an epiphany or something down there

It was tough not smoking, but with no store around for twenty miles, what was one to do?
Each time I felt like smoking, I thought about her and her ears. Compared to everything 
I'd lost this far, losing smoking was trivial. And indeed it was.”
-Haruki Murakami, A Wild Sheep Chase