Sunday, April 27, 2008

15 minutes of memories

Machaca burritos rolled in foil paper release steam when taken out of their Ziploc baggies, Joshua Trees on the drive to El Centro remind her that she wants to replant her garden, add some nature to a ship wreck themed pool area, surrounding a double-layered strawberry filled cake with a big “15” the presents sit on the table not by size but by order in which to be opened, Christmas bows hide between her nylon wearing legs and the coffee table, on a carpet covered with ripped wrapping paper, her breath blows into arm floaties faster than my mom so I can run into the water, catch up with my cousins, already fishing for crabs at the water’s edge, she said she would only ride the Ninja rollercoaster, she went on twice. In a family of men, she was content. You could tell she wanted a girl, wanted someone to hand her possessions down to someday. I got two of her gold bracelets, a blazer, a miniature thumb-sized porcelain dog, a leg broken so it doesn’t stand on its own, a Christmas teddy bear pin with ice skates on and a tiny red scarf, and a picture of the two of us together, when we thought she was sick with a cold.

(This was written in 2005, five years after my tia Martha passed of cancer. I had set out to write for 15 minutes straight about any memories that crossed my mind about my life with her. It purely began out of curiosity, to see how my mind worked, and what it wanted to remember. I made sure not to edit the memories that were flowing through my mind at the time because I wanted it to be true and simple to its title. I remember falling in love with this piece after I was done-content that I was able to capture these fragments of her life and hold on to them.

I'm posting this now because I wanted to revisit these memories and attempt to write a second part-to see what memories would have changed if I sat to write for another 15 minutes. I began writing and became irritated with what was being remembered. The latter part of her life, that I refuse to associate with her reappeared. My mind denied me access to any other memory aside from those when she was too ill to smile anymore.

The process of remembering someone that you know should still be around today has proved difficult. You never want to admit to forgetting someone's smell, someone's touch-it's something we all fear. Do you forget how it was to receive a hug, because you're not that small girl that would run into her arms as you got out of the car? The pieces of memory I hold onto have no sound-solely a reel of images caught in an action associated with the younger me. This short piece encompasses those moments as they still present themselves in my memory today.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great writing, it puts a smile on my face to see that someone else other than me, remembers her with the same special Love that I will alway have for her. My Wonderful Loving Sister.