Worse to be Simply Forgotten?

I dreamt of you the other night:
The white of your neck,
Silhouetted by starry hair,
Your crooked smile seemed to say,
“If you have a problem, deal with it.”
While you moved to a song only you heard,
Golden eyes gleaming with secrets thoughts,
And your sharp personality cutting every word.

But then I remembered,
Your eyes were a pale green,
Like a southern sea after a gale,
You laughed when I said that the first time,
And that made me feel like I was very clever,
While I sipped my coffee and read your stories.

No, wait, they were my stories,
And I don’t think that was you, after all,
Are you the dark-haired artist harboring secrets,
The smiling debutante with the oft-crushed heart?
The pale-eyed firebrand who wept hot in my arms?
The fae-girl who curled into a ball until she vanished?

I wonder, softly, as the dream fades,
Is it worse for your identity to be lost to a maelstrom,
Of a thousand-thousand loves, mixed like cake batter,
To serve as a dessert for an already too-sweet memory?

Or is it worse to be simply forgotten?

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8 thoughts on “Worse to be Simply Forgotten?

    1. Thank you for your kind comment. I think one of the struggles I have with memory is that it proves elusive. I did indeed have a dream the other night where my memories became hazy about eyes, faces, voices and events. It was certainly interesting, and I do truly wonder if it is better to be forgotten, rather than become something you never were.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I dream poetry and story. Forgotten places appear again and I write the dreams to paper. Dreams, our doorways to places. I agree. Something we must forget, if we can. You are welcome dear Masa.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. “Your crooked smile seemed to say,
    “If you have a problem, deal with it.”
    While you moved to a song only you heard,
    Golden eyes gleaming with secrets thoughts,
    And your sharp personality cutting every word.”

    I was listening to Beethoven’s “Virus” when reading this, and it seems almost fitting here.

    I really love this piece. It’s tragic in the sense of what is real and what is not? Everything that we do know comes down to memory. This piece seems like reliving those past moments in a haze of faces that appear in your dreams. You never quite remember them thoroughly, but the emotion is powerful, it’s practically devastating.

    I also think it’s about when we can no longer properly recall the people who were in our lives once. I, for instance, cannot remember my great uncle’s face that well even though I’ve seen him on more than one occasion; it’s a scary, disorienting feeling I think. This also seems to delve into what these memories, influences, and people make us as.

    “I wonder, softly, as the dream fades,
    Is it worse for your identity to be lost to a maelstrom,
    Of a thousand-thousand loves, mixed like cake batter,
    To serve as a dessert for an already too-sweet memory?

    Or is it worse to be simply forgotten?”

    To be forgotten is a terrifying thought for some. Impacts? Impressions? Loves? However if becoming lost in who you are and your identity, it at least implies hope that you can potentially gain a new identity whether yours or how you perceive others’ identities in your mind. I really wouldn’t know how to answer these questions, personally. There’s the extent that at least being forgotten that no one would remember, but that would also depend the impact of the person and their legacy.

    I think moving on is a step to forget–to leave behind what we should. Then conquering the identity might be easier to grapple, only if for improvement of the self.

    Just my thoughts and pennies here. I love how introspective this piece is, and it’s so beautifully weaved with fascinating comparisons and imagery; I’m in awe. Such wonderful, inspiring work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am genuinely at a loss for how to respond to your commentary, here! First of all, thank you for taking the time to read my recollections. Secondly, I’m glad you were struck the way you did – genuine loss through being forgotten must be a primal fear, esoteric though it is. I struggle often with the gentle peace of oblivion, and I’m constantly teetering on whether acceptance of nonexistence is less or more horrific than being recalled incorrectly.

      Legacy is a hell of a thing to consider in a poet’s blog this corner of WordPress, but it haunts me every day. Not simply my own, but the faint tendrils of memory of those people who have touched and shaped my life. Again, is it more horrific to be forgotten totally, or be replaced by an alien memory so far removed from yourself that it no longer resembles you in any form?

      Again, thank you for taking the time.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This poem has made me think! I think if you are a poet and/or writer you want your work to be your legacy. I think being forgotten must be a primal feeling. Look how cavemen painted their lives on the inside of caves. Then when language was born how oral tradition kept the stories alive in poetry, storytelling and song and finally into the written word.

    Dreams are important, they are sending us messages. You can delve more into this subject if you wish.

    As for other people who have influenced us along the way, there is a saying:
    “People come into your life for a reason, a season or to stay forever.” I think it may be Anon.
    Thank you for taking my mind down various paths it hasn’t been for a while.
    ❤👩‍🦰❤🙂💛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comments! I am a touch taken aback by how many people have responded to this bit of poetry, but I suppose a collection of poets and artists likely have the delicacy of legacy in the back of their mind for good reason.

      I think when I look back on the dreams about so-and-so and my loves, what struck me enough to write the poem was that the memory itself felt like defilement – how could I lament and miss the touch of a long-lost lover when I suddenly cannot recall her features (physical or otherwise). It made me wonder how I might be remembered myself, and whether there is a quiet nobility to being totally obliterated by memory, or if it is indeed better to be clung to, even if your form and memory has deviated to the point of being unrecognizable.

      But those musings are for another time and likely future poetry. I thank you so much again for your comments – I am so very thankful.

      Like

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