Monday Morning Musings:
“It is the onion, memory,
that makes me cry.”
From Craig Raine, “The Onion”
“Music, when soft voices die,
Vibrates in the memory—”
–Percy Bysshe Shelley, from “Music When Soft Voices Die (To. ..)
the universe born
from a fire dance
with a bang, barging forth,
endless now, eternal,
remembering the almost
and the always
rounding in long, liquid circles
yet there it is–
the secret poetry,
of the dawning day,
hints of light in the darkness.
Leaves turn scarlet and gold
against the azure blue, so bold
but as the air turns crisp and cold
and the leaves fall, uncontrolled
the bright green of trees and grass,
the calls of birds, the way they dance
into the slanted light of autumn
the scent of stew and bread
and the blankets piled upon the bed—
and yet, still I see
moving from flower to flower
knowing his hours
does he remember?
(What are the dreams of a bee?)
I see the spotted lantern fly,
remember to crush it, say good-bye
dead bug, though I feel some remorse
he’s only doing his job, of course–
but once, did he remember the air
and sunlight, feel despair?
The man in the movie forgets the facts
of his life, he acts
on some written instructions,
and we make assumptions
connect the dots,
but sometimes, blank spots
are filled in with what wasn’t there–
my mom fills these holes in the air
with dreams, believes
things that never happened, perceives
a different time-line, a reality
of what never was and never will be
and so, it goes, we see,
and will we remember this
autumn coming, in starts and fits
but summer stays, and we sit outside
hide (a bit)
from truth, well, who’s to decide
what is right, and what we abide?
We smile, drink wine
enjoy the sun, and life is fine
mostly, though we remember
autumn comes, and pages turn,
emotions churn, we yearn
for things that never were, perhaps
or for our world not to collapse,
reflect on the past, talk
of life and a book
and we look
observe, that time moves on
and circles back
and light comes, sometimes at a slant
or through the cracks,
I remember that.
We haven’t had a chance to get to the movies (sigh, maybe when this book is done)– but Dale, we did see a good one on Netflix. Remember. Trailer here. It’s from 2015, but I don’t remember it in the theaters. It’s much better than the synopsis sounds: a man with dementia follows the written instructions of a fellow nursing home resident to hunt down the man who killed their families at Auschwitz. Well, the director is Atom Egoyan, and it stars Christopher Plummer. Certainly not upbeat, but very well-done, a quiet sort of thriller.
All our memories woven, dream like, with those of your mother, unknown
Thank you very much, Derrick.
You always make the best of your weekends. Caught the early glimpses of fall that will be reigning upon us soon … very soon. Love the way you’ve woven dreams here.
Thank you very much, Frank. We tried to work in something fun. 🙂
Beautiful, Merril. It looks like you guys had a nice weekend. I see your leaves are starting to change. It’s predicted to be in the 90’s here all week. Sadly, no signs of fall.
The leaves are just starting to turn. We had a few cool night last week, but then it got hot again here, too. We turned the a/c back on Sunday night, but it should be cooler today. The weekend was mostly work and then seeing my mom, but we went out afterward on Sunday night. 🙂
Sounds like our weather…except no cool air for the next 5 days or so. I hope you had a nice visit with your mother and she’s doing okay.
Thanks, Jill. Today it’s really nice here.
This was beautiful and inspiring
Thank you so much!
I love this one. It seems more of a piece than your usual musings which are independent thoughts woven through with a common thread. This one is a sustained, lovely piece of writing, melancholy and tender. Like the season, I suppose.
Thank you very much, Jane! Yes, that’s kind of how I felt when I was writing it. 🙂
“from truth, well, who’s to decide
what is right, and what we abide?”
So true. Life still follows its course.
Yes, it does. Thank you, Ken.
Wonderfully shared week.
And I love when there is a footnote to me 😉 I actually had that one on my PVR a while back and never got to see it as the system went kaput and I lost all my recordings. I had forgotten about it and now shall hope it’s on the Canadian Netflix too!
Thank you, Dale!
Let me know what you think, if you see it.
“my mom fills these holes in the air / with dreams, believes / things that never happened, perceives / a different time-line, a reality / of what never was and never will be / and so, it goes, we see, … ” I love these lines. I understand it can be distressing to see your mom go through this, and I wonder if this is just the soul’s way to comfort and cope against the medical explanations. You make it sound magical, Merril, whether you intend or not.
On a different note, I thought you were referencing the movie Memento. I haven’t heard of Remember but will add it to my list 🙂
Thank you, Marie. I’m glad I made it sound magical–the reality is not at all. I think there are a few things that she imagines that might be comforting, but there are other times that she knows she is confused. And of course, it’s distressing for us. Yes, I loved Memento, and you’re right, my lines could have applied to it. We both liked Remember.
Waking with a half-remembered dream this morning, trying to reconstruct and find the storyline…perhaps that is what dementia resembles. Your description of your mother fits it so well.
Sometimes what we seek (or need, maybe) will never fit into a coherent story. (K)
Thanks, Kerfe. Yes, I’ve sometimes wondered if I dreamt something or not. It doesn’t help that my mom also does not see well.
Perhaps she sees as Monet did…
That movie sounds very good. I love your city and homey pix. I would feel strange without them. You know my favorite is the reflection. Memory is such a strange creature, isn’t it?
Thanks, Luanne. It was a good movie. Christopher Plummer was excellent. I was pleased with the reflection photo, too. I had taken some shots of City Hall reflected in another building, but the puddle reflection was so much better.
I can’t believe Plummer was still going strong as of 2015! I just looked him up. He was born near the end of 1929. He’s 89, so he was 85. I can’t imagine making movies at that age. What was even more amazing was seeing Estelle Parsons in the national tour of August: Osage County 10 years ago when she was 81. That role called for a ton of stamina, energy, strength, night after night.
Apparently, he’s still working, too! Did you see him in the movie, “Beginners”? I guess he was young then, only 80 or so. Hahaha. Doing a play–and touring–yes, that must take a lot of stamina.
I did not. He is one tough old guy!
You are our very own poetic light in the darkness xx
Thank you very much! 😘
Simply beautiful Merril thank you .. I love your attention to detail that makes everything larger and more real 🙂
Thank you for your lovely comment, Susan!
This is beautiful. It has such a dreamlike quality to it.
Thank you very much, Robin!