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Posts Tagged ‘remembering’

 

 

 

In the bottom of my bottom drawer,

my swimming suit hides beneath t-shirts

and mini skirts, all of them wrinkled.

The bikini top strings are untied—

they snake around the dark space

like the sprouted eyes of potatoes.

All this waiting. Somewhere there is light.

The shape of the suit remembers

what it is like to hold things in

and keep things up. It remembers

the way the ocean waves tugged at its knots,

the gritty insistence of sand.

Outside, it is snowing again—

snow on the buds of the lilac tree,

snow on the first green of parsley.

Inside, there is this woman

who has stuffed things into dark corners.

I have nearly forgotten what it is

to be warm, warm enough

to wear next to nothing, warm enough

not to cover my heart with layer

after heavy layer. I am learning

how what is forgotten doesn’t really

go away. The shape of me

remembers how to pull my arms

through the water, how to tread

to stay on top. Outside, the sound

of the plow scrapes past. I am wondering

what else might be in that bottom drawer.

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for Lian Canty’s Alphabet Menagerie, a V poem

If you forget why it’s good to be patient,
consider the Venus fly trap.
And ask the velociraptor
if you forget why it pays to run fast.

If you ever forget death’s a blessing,
ask the vulture who sits on the wire.
And if you forget how fast things change
ask volcanoes what they know of fire.

And vanilla, it will give you a taste
if you forget it’s a gift to be plain.
The viper can help you remember
to respect anything that has fangs.

If you forget aging is sweet,
ask the vineyard about harvest time.
If you forget aging is painful,
the Victrola can tell you sometime.

If you forget that every touch matters,
ask the violin how it makes sound.
If you forget how to love the darkness
ask the vole why he lives underground.

There is no shame in forgetting.
It’s a matter of gracious surrender
and learning to ask the world to help us
(even if we don’t want to) remember.

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Mischief

all day as I walk
I practice the art
of forgetting—
which means all day I remember
what I wish to forget

*

that rock
I’ve been carrying—
every time I put it down
I find it again
in my other pocket

*

these thoughts
wear the strangest shoes—
no heel, no toe,
trying to track them
I see they go both ways at once

*

caught in a tunnel
with a fire at both ends—
now would be
a perfect time
to learn to dig

*

in the end
there is no rock, no shoes,
no tunnel no fire—
there is only the art
of loving the one who remembers

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