Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Memoir Prose Poem


Yes, we’re an item now.  No, it’s not actually a big surprise; at least, not when I think about it.  True, she wasn’t my dream partner.  She wasn’t classy.  She didn’t know how to dress.  She grew up in trailer parks, or in falling down trailers out in the woods.  She didn’t go to the best schools or have private lessons in dance or painting.  Memoir, however, was always there for me.  We started off as occasional friends, meeting up in the sparse pages of diaries I kept starting and re-starting as a child.  I’d put a few words on the page about the goats bleating at six a.m., and she’d pop in with some sassy comments about Mom’s new boyfriend or the cold sore on my lip.  But it wasn’t until junior high that we really clicked on a regular basis.  Memoir was my go-to girl for all the joy and anger and fury I felt when my father returned from San Quentin.  Sure, at that point in her career, Memoir disguised herself as poetry, but I didn’t care what she looked like or what name she used, as long as she met me on the page for a good bitch session.  By high school, we had learned a lot about each other’s idiosyncrasies – I liked to dwell on every velvety sensory detail, she preferred the scent of a good strong metaphor.  Sometimes, she was jealous of my other friends – Band, Orchestra, Jessica.  But she wasn’t bothered at all by the two or three ‘boyfriends’ I had.  She knew they were no threat to her hold on me.  Still, after high school, we had a terrible break up.  It was all my fault, I admit.  We’d been madly in love, inseparable really.  I took her everywhere with me, and she got me through a lot of shitty stuff.  But then Real Life came along, and scared the crap out of me.  Real Life had nothing to do with Memoir, or so I thought at the time.  Real Life was blunt and brutal and rough and, worst of all, required full-time employment.  This left me no time to meet with Memoir in quiet little corners or early mornings with tea.  Well, we were both young, Memoir and I, with no real role models for how to make a serious relationship work.  I abandoned Memoir for twenty long years.  Lonely?  Sure.  But between playing Grown Up, having babies, and cleaning houses, I kept busy … until none of that was enough anymore.  Until a lifetime of listening to everyone else’s voice – commands, demands, whining and  wailing – left me all filled up with no where to go.  I was a mess.  But when I sought my Memoir out, longing for a voice of my own, guess what?  She’d been waiting for me all that time.  Oh, maybe she’d gone off and had a few adventures of her own, learned something about lyricism and truth and erotic rhetoric with instructors I didn’t care to acknowledge.  Does it really matter? Older, calmer, and much more stylish, she greeted me with a big kiss and a great collection of turquoise pens.  We headed for that big white page and rolled around together for hours and hours; we're still busy making up for those lost years.

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