poetryrepairs 16,06:066

SUE LITTLETON: the death of memory
VERNON WARING : m/twelve

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VERNON WARING
the death of memory

that must be the final indignity the thought that comes and goes explodes vanishes like some mythical gossamer thing that drifts in your mind the vision that completely disappears as if some invisible sprite had swiped it from some troublesome cobweb in your brain and hustled it away that image that feeling that number that person's eyes nose mouth that remembrance that funny thing you said at some raucous party a few years ago or was it many years ago? you can almost hear the laughter from the crowd as if you were there again but what was it you said exactly? and what about that old neighbor you liked so much the one who died shoveling snow? a man you knew for twenty years and now you can only vaguely recall his body sprawled out at the end of his driveway now you can't even summon his name what was his name? what was it? you would be grateful now to dredge up the very first time you met your future in-laws your daughter's first dance recital your grandson's first soccer match or even that poem you revisited last night before you fell asleep that poem your wife shared with you what was that poem about? what was the title? the audacious first line? all the words and clever alliteration all reduced to a hazy blur dissipating like those antacid tablets that fizzed into a seltzery four ounces swirling midway down a plain white dixie cup you left abandoned forgotten on the bathroom counter hours ago...could even discomfort even pain be erased so quickly so easily so thoroughly?

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VERNON WARING
m/twelve 

my sister emily had leukemia but was in remission we wanted to let her know how special she was so we sent away to a mail order place in new hampshire where - for forty five dollars - they sell you title to a star in the sky and you name the star after someone and they send you a celestial map that is all blueprint blue with spidery white lines compass points big red dots we checked the map out and found the designated location of what we named the emily star situated at the intersection of m and twelve - m/twelve on the celestial map - a star in a cluster of stars in the sword handle of perseus the brochure said one freezing cold night we all saw the emily star blinking like the only light on a tiny christmas tree but we could see it clear enough no need for a telescope or anything and we cheered and prayed and talked about god and love and life then two weeks ago right after emily got real sick again we looked up and noticed that the emily star was gone and my son looked up at emily's window... it had the lightest glow coming from her bedside lamp so we just looked at one another and went inside and i quietly walked up the stairs and entered her room

poetryrepairs #225 15,06:066






   




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