DO: Make a mark.
“I bent down the page who’s triangle still marks that instant. Touching that triangle of yellowed paper today is like sliding my hand into the glove of my seventeen-year-old hand.”
“The sentence that had so addled me suddenly made sense (in the paperback…I still own, the phrase has rockets and fireworks scribbled alongside it).”
– Lit by Mary Karr
I’ve been reading Lit, the second book in a series of memoirs by author Mary Karr. Just last month I read her first, The Liars Club, and she’s quickly become a favorite. Her stories – the way in which she weaves them and presents them – have staying power. They linger in my thoughts and keep my brain from rest. Just in the opening chapters of this second installment, she’s gotten me to thinking about my physical presence now, and how it will creep into my life down the road.
It’s beautiful – the way opening an old book, the pages dog-eared and the notes scribbled, puts her right back in the very place she was when she first read it. It goes to prove that sometimes it takes a physical mark or action to remember.
We forget. How can we not? With 24 hours in a day, 365 days a year, and around 100 years of lifetime – a lot happens. You’re not always thinking of one instant long ago, but sometimes you come across proof of your former self. The marks you make have a way of burning themselves in an instant, and upon their discovery you’re immediately transported back to that time and place – the thoughts and feelings that ran through your head become crystal clear.
So, I’ve decided that I won’t hold back. If I want to make a note in my book, rip a page out of a magazine, or draw in my sketchbook, I’ll do it. It’s not ruining something precious; it’s making something mine, and giving me a connection to a certain moment. Of course, it’s already happened some, but I look forward to the day when these little bits of evidence will pop up and remind me of who I was when I would otherwise forget.
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