Maybe this is personal, maybe these are words that anyone might find a way to just pass the time.
A friend laments
Memory is not necessarily History
About the time of the turkey bake, about that special time of year when we most feel abandoned by the past and condemned by our future, someone wrote a letter.
Strange that a letter was written. It must have taken many sips of good whiskey or sniffs of unknown white powders. Strange that a letter was written that seemed to care and that a vision of a past was so chained with the heavy mud of I am the victim.
Don’t mourn me. Don’t help me. Don’t correct me. Just read a long letter and accept that I have chosen to remember and the story as I remember it.
This is about me.
And even if I speak of the pain of death of others, of suicide of others, of separation from others, of being deserted by others, this is still just about me.
Strange that a letter was written. Strange that a letter was written to whom you chose to receive the letter. A letter, an epistolary memory. A recap of your world as you peer back into the murk.
Maybe the letter would have best been written to yourself, so that you would understand and it would truly be for and about you. Maybe there could have been time better spent at a barstool, in a quiet corner of a quiet bar. Maybe a mumbled call made from a darkened room and comforted by a sip and brought back by a sniff.
Memory is funny. Memory is told though our eyes and memories are sometime muddled by times. Memories are sometimes muddled by drugs or other memories or tears or dark rooms. Even if you are corrected and told that your memory is a dream of a past, is a hope of a dream of a past. It is still just your dream of the past. A Remembrance of Things Past as surfaced by eating your own Madeline or seeing a photograph or just listening to a song play out in the echo of a distant room.
Maybe a memory is made while laying naked in a bed while the images of those reflected by the light at our back, play out on the bare walls that surround our view. In a cave, a memory created where we have no way to spin around to find out what really was the dynamic of what happened or why a man is killed in Sarajevo like thousands are but only one man brought a world to war.
Memory is funny. Maybe the difference between a memory and history is singularity and when we base the revolution on one memory we find ourselves standing in a muddy field, surrounded by the bloodied dead who followed us into our battle. They followed our memory and were trapped and now lay dead in the mud. But a memory is personal True History. A memory is true singularity and if we follow it, we end up dead in the mud and really there was no purpose to our sacrifice.
History is universal. It is a mélange of memory not swayed by a single perception.
As you recount your memory, you tend to forgive your actions, forget your motivations and remember how you were moved. But your memory was a compellation of many events, of time, of environment, of other memories of others, of others. Your memories are rarely singular, rarely born in isolation. They are just captured, swaddled in our imperfection that way. They are flawed in their creation and difficult to be used to move forward.
Fool me once, shame, on you; fool me twice, shame on me. And you continue to be fooled and to this day you are the fool surrounded by the fools. And you are shamed and you sip again and just one more sniff.
Well friend as you lament the failures of the past, as you wallow in the sips and sniff of past memories, of the pain that others brought to your door, or pain you welcomed with arms spread wide as you stood at your door and shrieked and bellowed and screamed to capture their attention so that they would join you and drink your wine and share your bread. You continue to this moment to fall victim to your same lamentations. You continue to allow those who so addled your memories to re-enter your space in other shapes and forms and manifestation and continue to fill your past with pain, your present with confusion and your future with false determination.
Those who fail to recognize history are cursed to repeat it.
I look to readers to tell me advise me, to warn me of demons and devils who would smile and take forms to eat my soul. I look to their words and like an alchemist, I swirl the words to make gold rather than just swilling the sand I bring to my magic vessel. They talk to me of Gods, they talk to me of Men and words and views into valleys and from mountaintop where my answer can be found. They talk to me of a burning plain where I might seek answer. Few remember my memories and fewer still send me back to the isolation of my past to find the paths to my future.