Fishing for Memories

This theatre smells of fierce fantasies from years ago. I cannot be in this space now without remembering desparate desires for the bass player– sonorous doleful notes, a walrus mustache and bedroom eyes. Where is he now, and where those dreams that always end in a whiff of smoke dissipating?

My old friend in the Central Care, when she sees me, says, “There’s a good-looking man and he likes me.” She drops into her schoolgirl self and I follow. “Tell me all about him,” but she can’t. The speech aphasia has her tongue and won’t let go. “Are you her daughter?” the nurse asks. “She’s my friend,” I say, but I don’t tell her we’re the same age.

I always remember the one that got away, the motorcycle one I never fucked, and all the ones I did I have forgotten now. But motorcycle one in his black leather, Harley-Davidson and boots hands me his handwritten address, kick-starts and roars off, never to be found. I drive by where I think he lives, but something tells me to learn to live with regret.

My friend searches for a word. I say, “They’re like fish, aren’t they? They slip from your grasp.” “And sometimes they bite,” she says.

Days shape themselves like water over rocks. Events, though numbered and written down, refuse to find a foothold in the mind. Only the present exists and tumbles on, flowing. Fireflies surprise and dusk darkens into sultry night. Something about Savannah and evening– I have not got my mind wrapped around yet.  A story whispers its opening line. How will it end? Oh, how will it end? In the mosquito-slapping night is a promise breathed in the very first line.

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