a new poem – The Colour of Memory

The Colour of Memory

The giggles began
at the end of the first bottle of red.
The muse was hovering
over your right shoulder
smiling at me
for the moment a little later
when my pen would
strike the paper and attempted magic
recreation would slap down words.

You were telling me a story
that made you look foolish
and you turned red again,

matching the wine,
matching the colour of memory
which is blood red for
a set of reasons, some
of them ferocious, some
of them courageous,
some of them still stuck in the blender,
beaten into the froth
we ran from
on the beach in North Carolina,
the sun just about down,
you remember the time I mean.

We finally came up
with a universal solvent principle,
our litmus test to end
all litmus tests.

Without personal standards,
the tennis net of life never gets cranked up.
No matter
how well you hit the ball
your game is all fake and lies.

You ruled that all zippers
must be made of metal.
All ties must be silk.
only German autos are really cars.

I remember how you warned me
about your mother.
Still we visited to make sure
that her new TV you had ordered for her
had arrived to keep her shredded nerves
in the general vicinity of her body.
No sign of the bottle,
just the tea cup,
never told me if it was vodka or what exactly.
Mrs. Devil and her details.

Red wine has drained out of my corner of the universe.
Coffee slides down.
Sleep stops by some nights.
Reasons keep coming to mind
I keep slapping them down like slow houseflies
at the end of October.

My new hobby
killing geriatric houseflies while
reading every line Shakespeare wrote.
Turning off the television and the computer.
Such a shame one cannot turn off memory.

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