Jewish Book: Saving Myself, a Los Angeles Childhood
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Jewish Childhood Blog - Just Put One Word In Front Of The Next
Monday, 24 February 2014 21:32

This continual voice in my head says to me: How long can you maintain the topic and stay in the now. Now. That is what there is.

How do I know this? I have been raised all my life with the understanding that memory can fade, retreat, become all that was and not what is.

I have been working on my second memoir, JUST NOW for six months now. I am up to almost 90 pages. It becomes more and more a being in my everyday consciousness. It blends and blurs my days, both prose and poetry.

My mentor finally said to me, "You are to go four weeks without writing poems dealing with this topic.  Can you do it?"

I have accepted the challenge and am at the end of my first week. There are three more weeks to go. One week with poems about living. Then I may review the challenge for another four weeks.

Surely there are other poems in me, ones with my every day world away from the memoir, about living with my family's Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

I have a list of topics, memories to continue the memoir. It takes all my concentration to proceed in this direction

Just tell the story, I say to myself. Put one foot in front of the other.  One word, then another, sequential, building a forward motion while the characters retreat as memory is extinguished one, then another.

I will continue this consideration as time goes on. Always remaining in the now of each one of them: my grandmother, Bubbie, my Uncle Dave, my father, my adoptive mother and my Aunt.

I will end with a short poem that I shall place at the end of the memoir, one published in the Manzanita Review a few years ago. It is called Epilog

Today is today.

This moment, this moment.

No way to temper date, month or year.

Just her welcoming me when I come to see her.

"It's my daughter, do you know my daughter?"

Like my puppy that greets me, a long lost friend

When I come back in three minutes

From taking out the trash.

There is some overlap with characters from my first memoir: SAVING MYSELF: A LOS ANGELES CHILDHOOD. It talks about some of these people, my family, in theirs and my earlier days. There are photos of them on my web site, if you wish to see them.

Thanks for reading a Jewish Childhood Blog.