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Notes from the past

by Jojovits1 

Posted: 17 April 2016
Word Count: 45
Summary: Very, very flash...here for rework :-)

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Music is memory.
Gifted fingers pluck
the melody and I
am no longer here.
Reliving past truths
I cannot change.
My histories collide
in a torrent
as the notes tremble
and fade.
I smile as I swallow 
the tear on my tongue.

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Comments by other Members

V`yonne at 12:32 on 17 April 2016  Report this post
Happened to me the other day. I had to ask the person who had the radio on to turn it off -- told her I couldn't take that song -- unhappy times. crying

Bazz at 14:43 on 17 April 2016  Report this post

Music is memory.

I know exactly what you mean by this. Some great lines here Jo, like "reliving my past truths", such a thought provoking phrase.

My histories collide
in a torrent
as the notes tremble
and fade.
I smile as I swallow 
the tear on my tongue.

This is such a brilliantly succint piece. Just two stanzas, about the rush of memory, and then the rush of emotion, not a word wasted. I really like this ending, so emotional and yet so calm and still... I think you've captured a moment a lot of people would recognise and understand very well... Great work.

James Graham at 20:49 on 19 April 2016  Report this post
We could have a discussion about this poem, Jo. The reason I say that is that technically – choice of words, form etc – I can hardly see anything to criticise. Perhaps ‘Transported’ isn’t necessary as the context supplies this meaning, but otherwise it’s concise, a tight form which seems to suit the subject very well. Your opening line is arresting. ‘My histories collide’ is the kind of line that makes the reader think but isn’t obscure, and the smile at the end suggests very economically an acceptance (like a shrug) of the experience and the sadness, and regret perhaps, that listening to music evokes. I see Oonah and Barry like it as much as I do.

From what you say in ‘Summary’ I gather you’re unsure of the poem. Is there any particular aspect of it that you’re not satisfied with? Anything about it that you’d like to ask? I’ll keep thinking it over too.


Jojovits1 at 21:27 on 19 April 2016  Report this post
Thanks James 😁

i think perhaps the fact that it was so quickly written...I don't trust it to be right.  Is it even too short?  Does it need more or is it okay with how it is?



stormbox at 23:37 on 19 April 2016  Report this post
Hi Jo,

I love this poem, it is short and incisive, but will really resonate (sorry!) with people. Everybody will have experienced a song or melody that stops them in their tracks and reminds them of an important occasion or special person.
This poem captures that perfectly. I think you need to trust your instincts! smiley

I agree with James that 'Transported' seems superfluous or out of context. I would say "Transported back/Transported elseshere" or omit Transported entirely since "I am no longer here" says it all.


James Graham at 14:29 on 20 April 2016  Report this post
Hi Jo – I agree with David that ‘transported’ could be left out. No need to replace it with anything else. Apart from that, you can tell from all the comments that the poem is fully realised and readers respond to it. I like a short, concise poem that says such a lot. And it touches on a real experience, and the feelings associated with it, in a way that will evoke similar feelings in others.

I suppose you could try writing a few lines to insert between the two stanzas. They would be about a particular memory, which can be a happy memory rather than a really grim, unhappy one. A happy memory goes with the smile at the end, but also we can be sad when we recall happy occasions or events a long time ago. Just because they are in the past and can never be repeated. It might be a good idea to address these lines to someone – ‘I remember when you…’

I must stress that the poem doesn’t need those extra lines. It would just be an experiment to see if it works, and if it doesn’t the original can stay as it is.


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