Sunday, April 01, 2007

what stays with you the longest



What stays with you latest and deepest? Of curious panics
Of hard-fought engagements or sieges tremendous what deepest remains?


—Walt Whitman
(I've quoted this before)

Memory is a hair-trigger thing. Summon, don't recall, then somewhere entirely not there - willfully, its trigger was a certain light.

...

When Linds and I were younger, our family lived in an apartment on an unremarkable street in Arlington. I now realize, it was a floor-through - the left half of an already narrow second floor.

Mom and Dad were simultaneously PhD candidates, each slogging dissertations on a shared manual typewriter.

Anyway.

Our long apartment was a series of rooms - their study at the front and, 3 rooms back and off the dining room, the bedroom, with the bunk bed, that Linds and I shared.

So the music would have been from the record player in the living room, and have been faint from journying by the time it came through our little-bit open door.

But I remember Smetana's Moldau playing. Though I didn't know that then - that i'd remember that.

A month ago I heard the Moldau again. For the first time since? - not sure.


And I was Smetana back to the bunk bed and the light through the just-cracked door and the fainter rattle of typing at the very front.

If I'd tried to summon what the age of 7 in a family of 4 on such an evening felt like, I couldn't possibly.

Then, this bit of music and now I know, that our lives were stretched ahead and together then: Mom and Dad were at the helm, Linds and I tucked into the stern. All was safe.

And they'd chosen Smetana that evening.

Now, two parts - Mom and Linds - of that Smetana-scored moment are gone and I feel very very far from the then.

C - wondering when Hudson's remembering begins, and what will stay

1 comment:

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