Random Access Memory


A time for rebirth.

A time for loss.

A time for remembering.

This is a found poem, so none of the words are original to me. The original texts remain relatively unaltered except in cases where it was absolutely necessary.

I needed something cathartic, something to ease the sadness and depression of this time of year.

This is the result:

RAM chip 2

Random Access Memory:

A Found Poem of Tweets

. . .

Reading my address book is a Reading of the Dead:

the accident a year ago,

the suspicious overdose,

those fallen on the thin, blue line,

those who simply lost their mind,

cancer, murder, suicide.

. . .

My phone is full of ghosts I won’t let go of:

a picture of the five of us,

him eating six scoops of ice cream,

the last voicemail and texts:

Merry Christmas! Happy Birthday!

Love You! Miss You!

Can’t wait for you to meet my baby!

OK, thanks

. . .

My phone and email are haunted places;

I wish the dead would just pick up their phones,

or answer those unanswered messages I left a while ago.

Calling voicemail just to pretend to talk to you

and imagine you’re checking your messages . . .

until the line was disconnected

and my texts comes back undeliverable.

I have an old box of phones with messages saved on them.

I’ve moved this box across the country twice,

and will probably move them forever.

. . .

There’s always a sense you can call beyond death.

I kept accidentally calling, but I just can’t hit delete,

marking them “deceased,” or changing my phone –

then they’re really, truly gone.

Calling at our usual time,

I think of all the things I would say

and the problems I would share;

long distance means something different now.

. . .

In cyberspace there’s no such thing as goodbye.

I still check Facebook and the Twitter feed,

you told me things I needed to hear.

Facebook reminders each year

for birthdays, anniversaries, invitations

suggesting I reconnect with the dead;

hoping for an RSVP from beyond the grave.

Reminders of the gifts I bought

and the songs I played for you;

Our contacts are like tattoos

– the story of our lives.

. . .

Some people you aren’t meant to get over,

so I write him letters and burn them,

hoping he gets them.

I keep the number on speed dial until it’s reassigned.

Same number, different face:

technological reincarnation

. . .

Rabbit holes stuffed with memory,

Digital immortality,

Deleting feels too much like forgetting.

For Grandma, Donny, Fred, Alan, and everyone else gone too soon.

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