I never want to forget anything,
says the maiden,
never want to forget my favorite doll or the way my mother smells when
she hugs me coming back from the field,
of cut grass and sweet sweat
I never want to forget the trees I have
climbed or the scrapes on my knee
the bruises on my shins
from shimmiying up thick bark,
the smell of sap sticky on my fingers
I never want to watch my body
change, like the seasons,
blood droplets like
marking me a woman now
I never want to forget
your screaming orange harvest-moon face,
the mother says to the child,
as she kisses her and they are both covered
I never want to forget
this intense love, as you grow fed by me
exclusively; why must you forget
these moments, so meaningful to me,
your smell like summer rain, your little fingers pink lace
I never want you to go,
to disappear from my hearth
leaving cold white ashes,
white as the snow on the ground,
white as my hair when I look in the mirror one morning
I cannot help but forget
says the crone,
I remember no longer;
I linger, eat spoonfulls
of mush; it tastes of memories.
I have lost a memory for each
tooth, each pearl white kiss
that fell from my lips, I can no longer recall
who I am or who I
used to be.
I want to forget, this, this end,
these weeks of bedridden
bedraggled bedside goodbyes,
abandoned tears, graceless, agony, and forgotten
days. To forget all this and remember my life.
Au Ra Cl
inks regret —
lest I forget.
of knots —
time slowly fades,
Past & Present Fortunes
“I can tell you have an old soul.” The gypsy noted sagely, sitting behind a Dollar-tree decor table with an ancient fishbowl set on a fancy coaster.
The mark stopped and regarded her for a moment, eyes full of thought. “Oh really? So?”
“If you’d like I can tell you how they lived, your past lives.” She waved a bangled hand to bid him closer. “Would you like to know if you were a king or a soldier?”
He mused. “What if I was a woman?”
“Well, certainly we could see that as well.”
“What if I wasn’t human?”
“What if I were a bug - you know, just a little ant that got squished after three months. Could you tell me about that life?”
Shocked, she stared at him under discount pharmacy eyeliner. “Why would you ever want to remember that kind of life?”
Smiling, he tilted his head at her. “But if that life wasn’t worth remembering, why would any of the others be? Surely all of my past lives have made me who I am?”
The gypsy frowned, her financial troubles feeling no less solvent with this line of thinking. “Perhaps they could teach you something valuable for this life?”
“How? They know nothing of my current life - as I know nothing of theirs.” He shrugged. “If my soul is as old as you say, then it must have been around enough to remember what it needs and let the rest go. I’d say I’m doing just fine, thanks.” With a tip of his hat, he continued towards his train.
Blinking blankly for a few moments, the gypsy’s eyes fell upon a girl racing towards the platform, a half-zipped messenger bag jostling next to her. “You girl - you look like an old soul.”
″Sorry! I’m late, can’t stop right now!” She threw a handful of change on the gypsy’s table without stopping to listen or even look at her sign.
The gypsy frowned, but scooped up the free money into a faux leather secondhand purse.
A bug appeared on the table as she cleared it. She raised a hand to smash it, but then reconsidered.
“Damn old souls,” she grumbled, rubbing the back of her neck and taking a sip from her water bottle, before spying out her next mark.
I wish I could forget the entirety of my childhood
All of the judgmental looks I got from others
All of the calls to the front office to explain all of the bruises on my body
I wish I could forget the childhood trauma that caused me to become so hateful
I wish I could forget everything and begin anew
I wish I could forget ever existing for it would bring me peace to not know anything
If only I hadn't been conceived, then I could have avoided my fate
I wish I could forget, but everytime I try the memories come flooding back
There is no forgetting the catastrophe of my life
there is no forgetting, but I wish there was a way for me to forget
He lifted the glass with a tremor, setting it down, empty, with a growl. Holding the open pack to his mouth, he lipped out a smoke and chuckled as he lit it. Michael always felt like a camel doing that, lips gripping in and out, looking for purchase. Taking a deep drag, he lifted the first picture.
In it stood a tall sturdy man holding a new child, grinning like a moron from head to toe. A ghost of that smile touched Michael's lips. Memory flooded through him, hazed by the scotch. The hospital smelled of, well, hospital things. Disinfectant and cotton and bowel movements and lysol. There were small warbling sounds from machines, and a tired woman sleeping just behind him. The flood receded and his features smoothed. Tossing the picture into the bucket, he poured another drink.
The next picture was of two small children, burdened with their fathers features, playing in autumn's shedding. The smell of dry leaves and cold wind swept through the room. Michael closed his eyes and felt the contrast of the still warm sun battling the chill in the air, laughter drifting just out of focus. Into the bucket.
The tremor returned as he held an image of a few men in hell, smiling despite wading through the slog of humanities hatred and disgust. Sand and grit cunched between his teeth as he ground them. The sounds of the wind ripping at canvas tents, bad guitar playing, and curses from a partners shitty bid interrupted by the sharp whistle and quickly followed explosion. Michael shuddered and sobbed as he fought to keep himself from flying to the ground.
The glass raised and emptied again. A phone vibrated on the table, the screen alight with a young girls face, one reminiscent of his own. He let it go to voicemail. More pictures went into the bucket, more ghosts of smiles and scents of times and places followed. Once they were all there, lighter fluid poured over them, and fire consumed. He sat there, watching the flames erase all the love and laughter from his world. Acrid smell filled the small apartment.
"Finally" Michael said with a breath. The loud bark of a 9mm semi-auto filled the silence.
It’s okay, I understand.
It's okay, I know that I am too much.
It's a reoccurring theme in my life.
I'm always too much for everyone.
They come and they go.
They stay and tell me it's okay
to be me, they can handle me.
But then I show them.
And they can't.
I'm too much for this world.
A seething ball of emotions,
Seeping at the seams.
I want to forget how troubled
I have always felt.
I want to forget the things that haunt me.
But this is who I am at my core,
sitting with pain,
I can always handle more.
Born and bred to feel.
The only thing I seem to forget,
when the dissociation kicks in,
Is that I am actually real.