Saturday, April 23, 2016

Keep your memories close

I think about memory and what it is. Keep your memories close, people say. Say it to children as often as they can. Keep them schooled up in bodymemory from early on. Give them an instrument for their own. Get them prentissed. And make them mind their memories.

I think about what it means to keep them close. The tradespeople who live and work in the city and trade in the market, they keep them on their bodies at all time, in pouches or pockets. The moneyed guilds, instrument makers and such, have elaborate bandoliers, belts with many pockets. The strandpickers port theirs in stickwrap, rather than linen or leather. Even Harry who reads the weather, whose house changes with the tide and whose head is loose as muttering, still keeps his wrapped in whatever he can find, and pushes them in his old shopping trolley along the strand of the embankment.

But for all that everyone keeps them and coddles them, I tend to think most adults wouldn't know their own memories from anybody else's. Something in their eyes and how they greet you in the market. At a certain point in your life, it's like you have to choose what to keep.
— from The Chimes, by Anna Smaill.

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