Oh wise worry, weep not for me,
keeper of my words and memory,
when you think of me, my works,
the phantom of I that still resides,
my shadow that falls, cast on walls,
oh wise, wonderful worry, weep not,
I would not need your wanton tears,
instead, think upon the years I was,
my smiles, those silly, willful laughs,
days filled with my wiles, wise worry;
Do not miss me, or mourn me, love me;
Open up those blessed days of before,
kiss me tenderly, hug me, even if bitterly,
time is bent, you see, so return to me,
embrace me, oh wise worry, weep not,
We have nothing but eternity.
Heaps of her across the deserted plains, oily fingers reaching up and over the horizon until all of the numbers fill her pockets, her father worried, and her muses covered with goat-head's thorn. Where does she start to fuse her needs with the weapons in their suburban corolla of lilacs and wanton redolence? It's the opacity in her finger nibs and the dozens of names she felt closing over her legs sideways, until she awakens in the night to take the blood dripping cotton tissues off of her face, off of her bed-side dresser table. She can't even paw forward or undress her wetness in haiku. Everyone she knows doesn't know her. Everything she's seen, doesn't seem to be there for her anymore. That's the trade they told her to barter for, the golden seals and vitamin needs she's gobbling up by the palmful every morning by seven.
Seven for the circus or the mimes, seven for the cloves hanging from the door and seven for the queries that strike back her abcesses and cost her seven by the quart and seven for the plastics. Seven dancing backwards towards a rook or a spade, seven inside her chest playing guitar with David Bowie, seven at the doggerel, and seven for the stitch and the obtuse- only a creature of seven might go for her, in a spot of doves, crank, and soda it is poison, seven is her panty line, her sexuality, her sinfulness, and her latitude over and over again. Seven makes her want for tomorrow, seven takes tomorrow and throws itself up against the wall, pledging a game in the summer, seven to a trip of caramel and dukes, seven for the prince and the painting of the two of them, seven for the winter, and for the shadows that stretch curiosity past the breath of a summons', seven for the day and seven for the evening, seven scratches her ears and pulls out her hair, seven is the ring and the blue phantom buried somewhere far, far away, green is what's left, but seven knows which way the rain comes and who is going to follow it through.
There is a numbness that radiates on the fringe, a tickly discomfort not even a narrator could let out or down to a name on the mountains near the nude plateau that conquers her nuance, and shakes the both of them to core of the fight. This is not a flag that costs us in coins or in dollars. This is the worry chiseling our shapes and our buttery hips, a stacked set of crazy in a photograph off the leash of only a few. And it calls them to the night when it's only three of us left, until every cord is untied, until every verb is set in its caste, or ringing out to the tremolos of rapture, and the musicianship of pepper-jacked sneezes in the ambers and umbers that although startling, we've all learned to convert our averages in order to swing under the storm, and baby each of us with an elixir of myriad captures, images, and violent abuse.
While the words can yield, and the festivities can hoard each of the simple new experiences against travels of women, and pictures from Mussorgsky riling up soft drinks and evocations towards the center where all of us sometimes will let ourselves, let loose. Something horrendous and cold plugging into the sugars, something quiet, nearly a friend of reminders, crustaceans and ocean making this top-down beach of faces for all to shake and roll with or set forward a cacophony of abuse. Until in a breath she calls for the infinite intuition sheltering her and our window from the pain of misuse.
That is the photograph where we have been looking to live, here is the memory we spent our minds trying desperately to relive in the shade and in the snafu, against the bark and the piano keys treating our rise. Within our skin and our pupils, our silver bookends and/or the mammals we don't use names for but for whom we've been introduced to.
Slowly but surely,
As time goes on,
I will fade from lives of those you love.
Slowly but surely,
Our ties will untangle
And my close-to-kin are estranged.
Slowly but surely,
I will miss these moments
These miracles that pause life itself.
Slowly but surely,
The new will know me
By only my name and your memory.
Until, our love is outlived.
I will simply become
A whispered thought
Choked back by fight of mind and heart
I will simply become
A "remember when"
As our songs drift by on an evening wind
I will simply become
"She was not a mistake", an "I miss her,
But not what we had in the end."
I will simply become
What you have become
Slowly but surely.
Art should be transparent. This is as transparent as I can get right now. Losing love, being in a good relationship that turned toxic, caring deeply for the one you had to leave behind, and watching his family - people you deeply care for and cannot be with- go through amazing life changes and new seasons, knowing only that you will slowly but surely be forgotten from their and his lives, hurts. Soon, my memory will be pushed out of his family by what is beautiful, new, and full of life. Here I sit, on the sidelines of their lives, cheering them on, and yet desperately missing being a part of their happiness. Love is a messy thing. And forgive me as I learn to give myself the space needed to heal over time.
I think it was that moment
between the look and the kiss
that triggered the highlight reel
of a thousand seconds
broken up between some years,
filtered through a kaleidoscope,
vaguely narrating familiar tales of one
of the world's strangest phenomenons
by language of wet mouths,
pools of dead stars swallowing our irises,
and the sensations left behind from
the brushing of hands so subtle,
you could never tell whether it really happened,
or if it was just the anticipation;
and I guess the best excuse I got
for why I can't remember any of it,
is because I never really forgot about it.
Ihadurca/Ihadulca Il Imella is the main antagonist of the 1999 PlayStation game, Evil Zone, an all-time favorite of mine to this day. Episode 9 in her story-arc was titled "Memory is Like a Kaleidoscope", and it was always something that stuck with me as I grew up. Some years back, I started to really grasp on what it meant to me; how memories sometimes have this way of shifting every time you reflect on them as time passes.
You sometimes remember one detail, maybe forget another, but the feeling of the moment is always there, it just presents itself differently while essentially staying unchanged at its core. Much like how a kaleidoscope, as different as every shape is each time you peek in and turn or shake it, still uses the same beads and gems to make the shapes you see.
And well, that's kind of what it was like sharing that tender moment with that old flame last year, like observing a kaleidoscope of all the moments from six years ago, up to that night.
There's a lot more to the world
Than what meets the eye
Physical intimacy laced with
There's no time in the universe
In which peace can be acquired
The day the earth stands still
Is the day we know what comes next
In a memory flashing by your mind
Just sputtering through the motions
But suddenly you're caught in derealization
And you can hear her voice again
Clear as wedding bells
A young girl reading sermons
To a man passed out drunk, and the woman who made him that way
I was just 4 when I first tasted beer
And I vomited all over myself
I was just 8 when I first tasted liquor
And I don't remember much else
Chicken wings with candles
And the songs my mother used to sing to me
The way she'd crawl in bed with me
In times of drunken solitude
Ungrateful cunt of a daughter
Who should've been aborted,
Well I tried, mama, I tried
Now that you're gone and you are nothing more than ashen memories
I look at you in your black box prison
With your name pasted to the front
And I tell you all the ways I have already died
I tell you all the ways I don't feel alive.
The way you screamed for help at the top of the stairs
And he's shoving he's pushing and you can't run
And I'm still here
And I'm still here fighting him away
He says he can't sleep in beds without you anymore
And coming home from 2nd grade
Police badges light up the front porch
And they're shoving you they're pushing and you can't run
And you're in handcuffs
And his arm is bleeding
the young man told me I was not alone
And falling apart on your floor
At a ripe 5 years old
And I'm crying I'm sobbing and you don't care
And I scream
And you don't love me anymore
The piano goes quiet
And after grandpa died
she took all his medicine
Muscle relaxers and pain killers and the daily booze
And she screamed at the walls she called god
For taking her children away
It was her all along
I do not hold grudges
But it took you dying for me to hold that promise
It took you dying for forgiveness
The family shuns me like how they did you
Black sheep we are
Your ashes lay on the table beside my bed
With fake vanilla candles that light up all kinds of colors
And I tell you all the ways I have already died
I tell you all the ways that I do not feel alive.
The courtyard sits behind her home
Seventeen paces from the door
And inside its iron perimeter
Clusters of daffodils and irises
Hydrangeas and lilies are
All surrounded by large hardy plants
Resilient to harsh northern winters
She posted the fencing
And the pave stones and the
Shrubs and the flowers
She dug the bowls
And made them twice the size of the roots
And in the spring
She fed and nurtured the plantings
And tended them until now
As it is summer
And his marker has disappeared from view
The fullness and well-being of the garden
Enveloping the flat gray slate
A respite warm and lasting
Until the chill of autumn
Again lays bare the past
"Press play again,"
Twinkling blurs on the horizon remind me of scorching azure eyes
Distant memories of a Subaru and the driveway of a stranger
Soft light twirls on a golden dance floor
night skies filled with stars take refuge in the freckled imperfections you adore
I'm 500 miles from home and it's been a while
But I swear I can still taste the morning dew on your lips
Time keeps going forward and
You have ambitions anew
Rewind seems so much more appealing
I am lost within the box of 64 colors.
Mom got it for me for my birthday.
Said it made me happy when I was young
—tickled pink by the thought of giving me a carton of my childhood.
The crayons lined up tightly like sardines,
tips blunt and paper perfectly peeled.
Colors seemingly endless.
Perhaps I could draw myself a new life.
The viridian found there; dulled, worn, and loved.
Or an airplane, to take me far away from this awful place.
A child sits in the far off room.
Scribbling across parchment
with her crayons sprawled along the floorboards
creaking as her mother approaches.
She abrades the azure along her drawing filling in the sky,
lost in her art.
The magenta of the heart she drew is split unevenly in two
on either side of the room,
she is pleased.
The canary of the sun with flecks of tangerine in it
lays naked and lonely behind her where she is unaware of its misery.
How wonderful it is that she has the delight of drawing!
“You are an artist” mother tells her.
She at the head of the army can conquer the whole page.
She can fill the paper—herself—with the colors.
The white crayon, sits alone in the box.
Immaculate and untouched.
But these are just crayons.
And can’t even color in the lines.
How the hell can a child be so happy with crayons?
Their paper peels unevenly and they snap when you press too hard.
They can’t change what there is.
I could break it.
I could smash this damn crayon.
I could turn them to colorful pieces of what they used to be.
Why would she get me a crayon set?
What is it to do for me?
To benefit me?
Pieces of a memory I don’t want to see.
I should melt it into a pool of wax
spreading seamlessly across the table,
dripping down the wrapper.
It would still fulfill its purpose.
The wax will still stain the page.
The world will still spin,
and time will still go on.
In the months before my wedding,
I searched for a special perfume
high and low, sampling scents,
making everyone crazy with
"What do you think of this one?"
My reason for obsessing was this:
to smell this fragrance
and be instantly taken back to the day I married
the man that I love; my best friend.
Because scents can trigger memories.
When we smell, the scents and odors around us
get routed through our olfactory system
which, in short, is closely connected
to the regions of the brain
that handle our memories and emotions
So one day, I opened a package
which held one of many, many, samples I purchased inside.
with notes of gardenia, jasmine, rose and a personal favorite, violet leaf - I thought I would enjoy it
however, this small vial held more than I ever expected.
I removed the stopper, and took a big whiff...
A warm floral scent, with a soapy musk, a slight spice and fruity notes
Suddenly, without any warning...
I was in a small, white bedroom, with two twin beds
a table between them, and on top, the lamp filled with shells.
The window with lacey curtains.
The two small shelves on the right wall with trinkets -
the dolls at the foot of the bed by the door
I could see the closet, with all the special clothes
the ones us grandkids wore to play dress up
and there, in the middle of everything, was the vanity.
That special vanity we couldn't touch, but secretly did
I could see the old makeup on top the warm stained, wooden vanity with the big mirror,
and the little bench
which sitting on made you feel so special.
In the middle of the memory,
I could smell it... this perfume
I knew it wasn't the same, but it smelled exactly like that room
like my grandma
I could almost hear her in the kitchen, yelling behind the closed door
"You kids better not get in my stuff!"
she always let us play in that special room
that little bedroom, once shared by siblings
always mad when we played with her things,
but she never stopped letting us play in that room
I remembered where I was,
and felt the wet tears in my eyes
But I kept smelling... (inhale)
hair rollers, and combs
doilies and the sandwich cookies
her black as night coffee and how she drank it at all hours
the giant backyard, and how it seemed to stretch for miles - a place to get lost and have adventures
the clothesline we would always hang off of,
for which we always got into trouble
the kitchen island, and the barstools
grandma always got on to us about kicking our short legs and marking up her cabinets
the special character cups collected over the years
that were for just us kids to drink from
I can see all the fridge magnets,
pictures and trinkets of all the places she and grandpa had been - all the places they planned to go
I remember Christmas, and the tree shaped birthday cake for Jesus
how she made us sing Happy Birthday to Jesus
and the mice, oh the mice
only Grandma, only Leila James
would collect figurines of something she was afraid of
I remember where I am, in my room
but I can smell her perfume
and can hear her sass and her jokes
I can hear her speaking the colorful language of a sailor
I remember the weeks we stayed with grandma and grandpa, when a hurricane took our home
In all the frustration and heartbreak
she told me it was rough, but I needed to be strong
I remember when I am
I remember that she has too slowly forgotten
No matter how strong the will
the mind does not remember
but I will remember, my small piece
I know so many others knew her better than me
We all remember when she began to forget
She started asking all of us grandkids
"When are you getting married?"
and now I know I can't look in the aisles and see her face
I never thought I would be without a grandmother on my wedding day
I never really thought I would ever get married
But I certainly never imagined being without three-fourths of a generation
I remember the night I wrote these memories down
the day she died, a day that was strange,
a day that I knew hurt her husband and children,
a day I knew she was finally at peace.
I remember the decision I made that night...
When I smell this fragrance, I smell her
maybe it only smells like her to me
I know if she were here, that is how she would smell
standing next to me in pictures
and telling me to shrink down because I was taller than her
On my wedding day, I want to know the ones I have lost are present in spirit
I want to wear my grandma's perfume
Lately, I have been suffering
From being slightly absent-minded,
Forgot to flush the Lav last night
Which almost left our lass blinded?
You dirty old sod!
You’ve forgotten to flush the chain,
Staring into the pan, she says
Looks like the remnants of your brain,
A genuine mistake possibly,
Fear will always be reminded of my error,
Her normally very passive tongue
Was now raging words of terror?
Yet I can see an escape route,
Or shall we say a viable excuse,
To explain my left deposits
Which were a little loose?
I know it has been a while my dear
Since you last visited the traps,
So I thought I would leave you a reminder
Then maybe just perhaps,
As it is over a week,
Since you last had a show,
I also detect a hint of jealousy,
Cos at least I can go!