How in love I was with poems I wrote ten years ago, five years,
five months, ten days ago, and now—meh. Neurologists say memories
adhere with strong emotion. Inside the heavy pressure of the ocean—oxygen-tanking,
mono-tasking, wet and hungry, muscles sore, I’m certain what I write is so important.
When my poems surface, what was a glowing brain of coral dries into a shriveled relic.
I reassemble fragments, hoping to revive as I revise. Is this how we revise our memories?
We expect to remember where and what we did and thought, yet our diaries scream
“very, very, VERY upset today!!!” and we forgot what happened. My mother-in-law insists
a baby photo of my husband was in Boston. He offers proof it was in Cleveland:
his height, the car with curves and fins. His mother glares at her trembling hands.
Her revision: it was in Boston—just before we moved to Cleveland. My husband stops
himself from saying that they lived in Cleveland first. In the photo,
he plays with a garden hose. You loved the water, she says. He says,
yes, I did.

Published in Sweet Tree Review