Historical Haze

Living behind the big house
in the half house
on the gravel alley
scenes from a childhood
shot on location
I used to remember things from then

the neighbors across the way
with a shaggy sheep dog
and a large wooden slide
built inside
a steep incline
descending from loft
to ground floor

running too fast and falling
a skinned knee
tiny stones embedded within
the blood and puss filled wound
sting of Bactine
and Bambi at the drive-in
to take my mind off the pain

but I don’t believe anymore
that I remember what I remember
my memory has devolved
into a memory of remembering
my memories
it’s a sorrowful remove
making who I was
distant and disconnected
from who I am

all those days
14,600 of them
separating me from the events

how many times through time
do we rewatch the same old scenes
hitting the rewind
and re-recording
the freshly recalled data
over the old

errors occur in duplication
degradation of image
drop-outs in sound
noise accumulation
we work to restore
to preserve the perfect print
but no matter how rigorous the effort
artifacts of poor processing remain
and the image of the past
is indelibly stained
by the needs of the present
changing fascist right wing dictators
into socialist left wing tyrants
turning deist unbelievers
in an intervening God
into fundamentalist Christians
who based their newly founded country on the Bible
history will be
precisely what we want it to be
no more and no less
nothing mistaken, nothing forgottenhistory, histoprical

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