A POEM A DAY

I'm just happy to be here.

Tag: memory

14/30: MEMORY & MEANING

Time is measured by experience. Experience is the story we tell until it is stored in our memory. How many stories have we told that remind us just how old we are? Stories are time. We’re running out of stories. I tell a story, and something comes alive. A detail crackles into a spark. Reading is a conjuring. The voice in my head arcs and bends. When I read, I search for meaning because meaning is what summons my memory. In understanding the language of right now, I almost ways turn back to my memories. Who empowered the past to cast such a long shadow? All of us did. Thinking is time-travel to a certain extent. Not quite a spell but how can it not be magic? How many of us have traveled back to the past with nothing more than our words? Neruda wrote: Love is so short, forgetting is long. He wasn’t wrong.

3/30: A poem, with light at the end of the tunnel

Sitting down to write always feels like

giving my memory the keys to the house.

As if, somewhere the real me ends,

And the narrator’s monologue begins.

A voice takes over, calls out from the dark.

A shape takes form, casts a shadow on the page.

A line takes time, craves a place to breakdown.

How I get from here to there is a gateway

only language can open. Afterall, language

is memory, is past tense, as in, the door to yesterday

unlocked. Ring the bell and walk in.

This is the tell, not show. I know

the words to this song. It’s a strange chorus,

but the one I know. Sitting down to write,

I don’t need a map. A path is found in every poem.

I suppose it’s why I let the mind wander like it does.

Dig myself a tunnel. Find light at the end.

20/30: IT IS TOO SOON TO SAY GOODBYE

Sometimes it’s the simple joy of standing in a circle with your best friends on a Friday night to remind us of the power of the infinite, the power of choice, the power of consequence. Life is a divine dance. I accept the invitation of every dance floor yet to call my name. So many years and small days spent counting the seconds of loneliness I almost forgot laughter. Fact of the matter is, I fed myself lie after lie until I could not get up in the morning. Perfected the habit of mourning what is still here. Thought I was a ghost disowning feeling. Thought feeling was proof and forgot truth. I wanted to leave my body and join the sky but—

It is too soon to say goodbye.

To who I was when I did not deserve the love at my door: come dance with this man who wants to kiss your salted cheeks. Let me open the door to this room where everyone is in love with you, or at least your smile. Even if you don’t show your teeth. That smirk does the lord’s work. Your joy is not a trick. Your reflection is an axe. Pick yourself up and cut down the bullshit trees. Please don’t forget. Please don’t forget. Please don’t forget. Please don’t forget, you are not helpless or heartless. I don’t know if anyone tries more than you. I don’t know if you know this, but love looks at you. How you move through crowds. How you hold onto everything that hurts you. How you hold onto everything that holds you. You, you, you, Zachary. I’m talking to you. The voice you use is a song someone loves to listen to. Your laugh is cash and every night is casino night. Your presence is ticket stub everyone keeps after the show ends. The show ends but you’re still on stage and the microphone is hot and believe it or not, everyone is listening to what you have to say.