Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Would it be good to see me again?

(This is for this week's Search Engine Fiction Prompt)

Today, my mind is crowded with people.
They push and shove to the front.
Loves from a time long gone,
But still present in my thoughts.
Pain and joy tossed but not mixed
Each playing their same cutting role.
And I wonder

Today, am I in your memories too?

An Italian boy caught by the rhetoric,
Catholic guilt tying his brain and hands.
I pulled and stretched him,
To make him into me.
But when I was gone,
He bounced back into His shape
And I turned away in disgust.

Today, am I in your memories too?

So insecure in her blanket of bravado
Hiding, her flaws peeking out at the corners,
Revealing the lie of her strength.
And I punished her for it.
Tolerating weakness was never my strong suit.
And yet when she chose to leave,
I stamped my feet in fury.

Today, am I in your memories too?

Twenty years older than me
A different world, a different life.
I craved his security, he hungered for my attention.
Talk and promises of more than I was willing to give.
‘Will you call me?’ he asked when I left.
‘Yes,’ I said cruelly
Knowing I never could.

Today, am I in your memories too?

Her mind tortured with drugs and cruel history.
Behind the ugly, steel shield was the tenderest heart
So greedy to be loved, only that, nothing more
And she might have been cured.
We tried, didn’t we?
In our own anguished, distorted way.
We failed despite our best effort.

Today, am I in your memories too?

If I am, if I am in you mind, is it pleasant when I pass through?
Or is it only an ache that you feel?
Do you think of me with love?
Or do you wish we never met?
Do you wonder where I’ve gone to?
Do I rumble around in your thoughts,
Appearing at odd moments,
Without warning, laying your heart flat with the loss?
Or has my time with you blown away
Like the dusty bits of an old tattered picture
Long forgotten.


paisley said...

what a thought provoking verse.. all the people we remember,, of them,, who remembers us?? will we ever really know the importance our life played in the lives of all of those that we have touched?? i am thinking if we knew,, there would be a lot less people that suffer from depression and feelings of uselessness,, don't you??

Anonymous said...

Wow. There are some people I don't see anymore yet I think of them all the time. Every now and then I wonder if they ever think of me, not in a conceited way (I hope). Just in the hope that I touched their life as they touched mine. Paisley has said it better than I ever could. And you - you really are an outstanding writer. It is such a pleasure to read your work.

Lauri said...

I often think of this when I look at photos with people in the background, like people who passed through my photo when I was taking it. I've wondered - around the world how many photos am I in like that? And sort of like that in people's lives. Like you said Paisley, there may be many people out there that we've touched and we don't even know it. It is hopeful isn't it, though I think perhaps my poem was the opposite of that. The ones we hope we touched and maybe we didn't.

Anonymous said...

"I think perhaps my poem was the opposite of that. The ones we hope we touched and maybe we didn't."

Because of the questioning refrain "Today, am I in your memories too?" and the questions in the last stanza, I read it more as being about wondering whether or not one has touched others in the past.

I enjoyed reading it. It is thought/emotion provoking.


anthonynorth said...

This is a deep and very reflective poem, with an excellent subject matter.
I think our memories of people become intermingled with changing appreciations of ourselves. So what we think 'is' very rarely was.

Lauri said...

David- yes, you're right. I think a lot about where I've left worthwhile memories and where I haven't.
Anthony- I think the fear IS that our memories are not real, distorted by time and mind editing; you are spot on with your comment.

Kayt said...

Very contemplative and lovely poem. I find the ending really beautiful with a subtle sense of ambiguity. As I read it, the speaker wants to know if they've been forgotten, fears perhaps that they have been, but hopes to be convinced otherwise. This is such a universal feeling I think - very resonant for me anyway. Given this topic I think you might like the book "The Five People You Meet in Heaven" by Mitch Albom - if you haven't already read it.

lissa said...

introspective, almost like you're talking about yourself but using others as a reminder perhaps of people and places that came and went

Lauri said...

Kayt and Lissa, thanks. I'm going to look for the book you've mentioned when I go to the city next week.