At one end of my day I was reading from Grace Nichols’ poetry collection ‘i is a long memoried woman’. At the other end of the same day my mind was full of my memories.
I tried to shake some, and others I remembered with relish.
As the conflicts surfaced in my mind I asked myself the question ‘What is the point of memories?’
The initial answer came to me swiftly. Memories are to comfort, remind, warn, guide, teach and to inform relationships connections.
I have some beautiful memories. Moments that I was part of recently. Moments that I shared a while ago. Moments that have faded like sepia pictures, but that I keep alive in my mind. I have mountains of moments to remember.
I also have some sad memories. Even thinking about them in a general way, they seem to me to be grouped together in the corner of a remote field where thunderclouds release relentless rain – that I realise are my tears. They are further away from me than my beautiful memories but they have not disappeared altogether.
I realised that I still need those memories, even though they were not full of butterflies and rainbows, they are still important in the structure of my life.
As I sank into my memories, like sinking into a freshly made bed, I realised that my initial reaction was right. The purpose of memories is myriad.
I have to use my memories – and my ventures into memory lane – to positive effect in my life today. They happened, they are past. Some will remain forever private - and rightly so.
Some memories are made to share. I am here now and I am making more beautiful memories to surround me and delight me, and these wonderful memories are crowding out those sad memories that will always inhabit the small corner in that distant rainy field. Sometimes the sad memories are defined and magnified but they never overshadow the treasures and pleasures of the memories I store at the front of my senses.
I recall with pleasure the particular sight of a smile as I was came into view, the singular smell of an individual shampoo on freshly washed hair, the delicious taste of a lingering kiss, that electric touch that charged my world or the simple uplifting sound of my name on special lips.
Oh yes, I remember it all so well ...