Posts Tagged with Memory
Book Jacket Manifest

It begins with Love, something felt
A rush of warmth
Afternoon… bitumen
A classroom exercise and[!]
We’re paired to dance
[Here Comes Your Chance, Girl]
Summon the Cool, pretend to chew
Chewing gum, casual
Punctured by a giggle
Oh so nervous: a darling demonstration
Young, heart-pumping, bright eyes
you’ve no idea!
Our Hands linked, clumsy feet
[perfection, really]
My direct gaze
[Dare not look away!] …savouring
This boyish boy, this spunky spunk
With well-know initials
in the margins of my workbook
And blue pen on my palm
A childish act; deliberate
As if it could manifest
– shoot out from the hands into existence.
I stand straight; straight and proud
Thankful for this time, my chance
Over the other pretty girls
with braided hair and lunchbox sweets
[low ponytail, my golden apple]
The boy stands, moves,
Moves as I do [or tries to]
This dancing girl
Actioning the Feet, Playing Cool,
all while Making Note
The Mind Camera – click, click, click
and memory preserved
locked, wound-tight
for the unravelling later, when
The Writer emerges to fan the fiction
Alone in my Room
There, I summoned You
My fantastical creation
The narration of events
[not quite] rightly so
The promise of a kiss
I replay, my theatre
Lips to hand, soft, pretending
It happened [!]
With the same conviction
looking for the Clover
in a green blanket of possibilities
[one I knew didn’t exist]
[but looked for nonetheless]
So that it might grant me
Just one wish –
Might these Day Dreams
be as Night Dreams
and exist in the waking morning
the Desired Events [obsessively nurtured]
Played out beautifully, as rehearsed
Over and Over and Over
You knew, [of course you did]
[or at least, you do now]
that you shared
a name with the King
The King of Horror.
Perhaps that influence, Now
This joy in fright
Travels down the spine
The scare – such a delight!
And skipping life’s pages
A bookshelf
and browsing book jackets
[my proud collection]
The name reminds me
Back then,
Back when-
the girl was quick to blush
You were the first boy
…the First Crush.

The Old Story

Whispers of the ghost
The Matron’s dining table
We sit, foofing
Our too hot tea
While late filtered sunlight
pours into the kitchen sink
and bounces bright wall shapes
the dog anxiously monitors
Amusing! I snap back
Best not to distract-
The comment
and I’ve got PlayDoh in the working
Playing pictures with the past
Shaping the image in my mind
Here, we reflect in silence
Only sounds of busy neighbours
Pushing their mowers
In the cooling hour
And a mother shouting
Somewhere, in a yard nearby
“Get inside, this minute!”
Here, I ask tentatively,
gently prodding at the construct,
The tangibility, this old ghost tale
A sigh, draws breath and then begins
Her hands busily, unconsciously
brushing over each other, one another
Rubbing warmth into her skin
As if there were a chill
Lulling in this room
This room:
with taunting Summer shapes
I can see
Tired eyes, she’s slow to recall
“It was a long time ago, after all-
“And I don’t know the full truth-
“But this, I’ll tell you-
“It happened.”
I’m looking at the painting
The red gum tree and the cart
Typical Australian art
I remember it hanging back
in the old house
That’s where it happened.
“But what about the bones?”
I blurt into the room, to no one really
I wait, leave the question hanging
and watch as it dries in the air
I can see there’s an old pain
Hiding in her old face;
a certain lack of colour
Something there and then gone
“It slept in that closet-
“For so many, many years.”
And she’s wringing her hands
Nervously, unconsciously
I take audible gulps of my
Now-cold tea
(unpleasant to begin with, really!)
I’m wondering, and then asking, (incredulously!)
“What……and you just let it be!?”
It just doesn’t make sense.
I stand… walk to the window
take note of the roses, perfectly groomed
Adorned with pink blooms
In a measured row
Look over to my sad knockabout car
Sitting ugly in the driveway
I find myself fighting
the urge to just leave, go
But instead here I’m facing it again
Her well-worn dining table
That sat many, fed many
I note the uniform placemats
Boring, beige, sensible
I catch myself out
I’m questioning events
Events and people therein
“I don’t understand-
“Why didn’t you do something?”
“Did you even try to do anything!?”
I stop, try swallow down my tone
Keep level, keep control
I ask, “Why wasn’t I ever told!?”
And now her milky blue eyes
Close, find the thought, open
I see it burning deep in her memory
But my intuition fails me
I’m watching, waiting
She says, “We wanted to wait-
“Wait for you to grow.-
“You see, it’s permanent: this ghost- “Wherever we go, it goes.-”
I flinch, “But didn’t you leave behind its bones?-
“That must be the reason why I hadn’t ever known?
“And if they are still there, in that house-
“Wouldn’t it now haunt someone else?”
She seems to shrink a little.
“No child,” she sighs
staring into her empty mug.
“Although we did try to pass it to another… but a ghost must remain from whence it came….”
I wait, anxious for her to speak. She looks up, pained, weak:
“…Honey, it lives in the skin of your mother.”