songs with a beat like a car alarm.
What's the earliest you can remember?
Do you smell the sour morning breath of your classmates back in elementary school as they shared an elaborate scheme to send a left-handed letter to their crush?
Do you remember whole films in your head as you fall asleep, twisting and turning on a pillow whose corner you rubbed against your eyelid back when you were old enough to acknowledge that fairies existed?
How about that squeaky toy wagon, screeching away with red wheels and blue edges, your Sesame Street cubes with bite marks resting in a pyramid on top?
Do you remember that Jacob's ladder, how it fascinated you as the colored blocks went form left to right, held up by lace?
I remember it all.
I remember the soccer team's screams as they yanked each other's shirts; I would hang upside down from a red-and-blue metal jungle gym where I'd eat my ham-and-cheese sandwiches, my sweet juice boxes. Berries were my favorite flavors. Mango the least favorite. It tasted bitter more often than not.
I remember every memory, nearly every word, or the flavor they held on the tip of my tongue.
I remember the laughter, the tears, every single thought held tight in the back of my throat;
every nightmare, every dream, every piece of clothing that got torn as I fell while running, on a skateboard, or the 16 miles I rode on a bicycle as the sharp pedal got caught up on my jeans.
Remembering is a blessing. Remembering is a curse.
Because you remember every loving, affectionate moment that made you feel
like you could soar high up in the air, untouched by the lightning in any storm,
and every single moment of doubt and slash of hurt, every cruel concept you've said,
every single goddamn frustration that roams freely across the streets of your head.
You remember every nook and cranny of every childhood homes, every apartment,
every step from every staircase you roamed.
And when people tell you, "Nah, that didn't happen, you're remembering it wrong,"
you feel the growing, aching frustration because
they don't get your brain the way that you do.
They do not get how you remember those exact moments:
the phone call you never picked up,
the hug from every person you've ever loved,
the way their skin smelled and the way their eyes glowed.
You remember everything.
So how dare they