Why Do People Have Memories?

It’s a late summer evening, I’m getting myself a bit of hot water for a tea.  The sterile cooker fire is silently hissing, flashing its placid limbs from under the bottom of the kettle.  Soon the water starts bubble-whispering; I extinguish the fire and pour myself a cup of steaming liquid.

It’s late summer evening, and I’m drinking my tea to the light of the robotic eyes of the street lamps beyond the window.  I really can’t understand why I still think it’s evening; my clock insists that midnight is around the ten-minute corner, and drowsiness is rising in soft forms from the distance of the hallway veiled in deep shadow.   Yet, I don’t believe I can sense the purring shagginess of the night; no, the night has an entirely different smell.

It’s late summer evening; will you please be silent, clock.

The tea is far from being refreshing; after that prolonged working day that I’ve had, it only seems to contribute to the campfire of my memories, to which my consciousness is getting lulled.  Ghostly steam rises from somewhere between my palms; rises, rises, caresses my face, caresses my thoughts.  The slight aroma waltzes with the intricate weaving of ideas, glides across the endless plains strewn with souvenirs.

In the grim facets of street light, I realise that the plains of memories never end.

Why do people have memories?  I find it really hard to grasp right now, with the intimate hearth of tea so near that it spreads its warmth directly through my body.  The clock is ticking uglily; time scratches its way through the toothful gears;  I shiver.

Why do people have memories?  Oh sure, I couldn’t do almost anything without one; no qualified work, no old friends, no talks of the times of yore hours on end.  But don’t try to buy me with all this stuff; I’m not lured.  Qualified work?  A chore.  Long talks?  Waste of time.  Old friends?  Friendship sparkles off in an instant; long-term relationship is an ornament on the walls of the temple which gets erected within the narrow time-frame of now.

No, having a memory for all of these is not worth it, it isn’t.  As faces become recognisable in the dark, hate starts.  I hate you, memory!  I hate you with every tiniest morsel of my spirit!  People, who have once sat about this table with me, float around.  I vaguely remark that my cup is already cold, as I battle the onslaught.  People, who I met once, unimportant people, come first.  Then comes she, who was the she of my life, whose face I will always recognise.   I can hear her smile, I can sense that at the tips of my fingers.  She smiles, her hair falls in lung rusty waves upon her graceful shoulders, as she sits there, across the table, looking at me, smiling, smiling.  Her hand lies extended on the table, white marbly fingers, black fingernails blacker than the dark.  Her silhouette is clearly outlined, her beauty shining wavefully, marblily, shadowily.

The face, the face that I will always recognise; that face is painfully close, the face I haven’t seen in ages.  I freeze.  The face which was the most different face on the earth, the face of my light, bears no more features.  I can retrace none, no, nothing!  Oh, you, poor memory!  No features left, emptiness!  The excruciatingly dead silhouette on the background of the window, the orphan withered shadow of a hand on the tablecloth, this is all you left me!..

Across the sea of emptiness spilling out of my colden cup, the clock strikes its glassy strings.  Faces dwindle; street lamps look my windows in the eye; sharp light crosses the kitchen in ghastly tatters.  My tea is gone; gone is its warmth.  Sensing the autumnal depart of everything, my consciousness demands a leave for herself.  In the eternal hiatus of the arriving night, I let her go.

Summer night has arrived.   Summer night.


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