I am my memories (a poem)

Part of your wisdom portfolio

Image by the author from Canva Pro

It felt best at thirteen syllables or fourteen with caesuras (pauses), so you have this poem in the Alexandrine meter. It’s my longest yet. But nothing like venturing into new waters. I hope it flows well till the end.

Aloud, aloud, recite aloud, dear friend.

I am my memories

Red flowered branches slide by under a blue sky,
Mom pushing my stroller, Dad beside in suit and tie,
Daily walk in Calcutta, I was a child of four,
Say my parents, stunned at fifty I recall this yore.

I see the arcing rock that scarred me when I was nine,
The joy at twelve when my first crush had a desk near mine,
Love’s hug at thirty when my wife reached Sydney,
The party full of laughter when I turned forty.

How does my mind do it, keep all this treasure for me?
Private, soothing, it’s my unique identity,
I’d be no one if I were to lose my memory,
I am nothing except the sum of my history.

I live by recalling what’s been happening to me,
Today writes one more page in my mind’s diary,
So will tomorrow record me with much consistence,
In its etched notes, you and I find my subsistence.

Memory is survival, growth, and reproduction,
It resides in muscles, intellect, our emotion,
Keeps us whole as individuals and social bodies,
Binds our community, nation, the human species.

Love’s essence is to witness and recall a life,
Commit unjudged to our mind their good times and strife,
Memory carves each of us our distinct wood grain,
Nuances of face, touch, and voice, a musical refrain.

Recollection stitches us into a family quilt, 
Old photos and videos shine with time’s added gilt,
When we were young, together, different, yet the same,
The fun times, the goofiness, the quirks of private fame.

We go on trips not for the moments that’ll be fleeting,
But the lifetime of memories we’ll be creating,
Remembrance of good times cherished over and over,
Reminiscing warmly with friends while we grow older.

We may think our mind’s designed for remembering,
Yet we see it prefers forgetting to retaining,
For life is wise, keeps our mind light, a sun-dappled path,
Each beam is joyful memory, shade is hurt forgot.

Memory can be deceptive, unreliable,
We create phantoms from fantasy, pictures, words we garble,
Invent recollections, convince ourselves they’re true,
Beware false memories don’t end up betraying you.

We may start living too much in memory’s mansion,
Cocooned in nostalgia, the real life abandon.
We get the best of memory from how we shape it,
Tomorrow is memory waiting, what’ll we make it?

Our need is so strong to stay in people’s memories,
We carve epitaphs on graves, churn out biographies,
Commemorate death days not to be soon forgotten,
We ensure living on through traditions begotten.

I hope you’ll remember me as I was, am, will be,
Your memory is the only existence for me,
With age will come loneliness, a weak mind, much pain,
But I will be content if my memories remain.

Connect with me!


Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x