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About the Poem

I never feel comfortable in a living or working environment until I have personalized it with my own memorabilia - things that say "I am here, and this is who I am". But several years ago I found myself in a situation where I lost a large part of myself and one of my closest friends at the same time. When I began to reflect on my life, I began to realize that I didn't even recognize the woman who was displayed on the walls of my apartment and my cubicle. This was my response to that epiphany.

Memoirs Of A Pack-rat

someday all that will be left of me will be my paraphernalia;
perhaps that is why I invest so much
in displaying my innards wherever possible:
scattering them on the walls,
neatly lining them on a shelf;
will it be enough?
I've never wasted time being concerned
about what the moment may bring -
my attention is always too focused
on how the moment will be remembered.
what of experience
so long as there is proof that the experience has been had?
photos, letters, knick-knacks, things -
I was here.
the day will come -
perhaps too soon -
when the world will come in
to look at the walls
and in the drawers
and on the shelves;
to examine all of the
pictures, posters, papers and poems.
yes, she was here.
she went to
a movie
a bar
a dance
an amusement park.
she loved many people
she lost many men
she cried many nights
and had many friends.
and the bottles will sit on the shelf
a silent testament
to her pathetic
struggle to save, to capture,
the one thing she could never have.
her life will sit in bottles:
on shelves, on speakers, in boxes
the wax she used to trap the time
holding in the screams
begging for freedom;
her own life that she imprisoned
because she was so afraid of losing it.
whispers of dreams
filling the cracks between candies and shells and stones
because none of the men ever could set them free.
that is all she shall leave for the world,
bottles instead of beauty
a bracelet instead of babies.
for all her efforts to leave something behind
faded to nothing more than etchings on a golden trinket
dangling about her wrist.
never knowing, never knowing,
as she slowly faded away,
what she took with her.
someday all that will be left of me will be my paraphernalia
maybe that’s all there ever was.

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2 Visitor Comments

This poem expresses exactly what I feel, when someone doesnt acknowledge my "stuff". To them, it's just junk, but to me, it's MY HISTORY!
This poem expresses the exact thoughts I've had in my heart and mind for the past 3 years since my father died. How true to my life experience. Beautiful!

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