Monday, February 6, 2012

Word Experiment #2 Cellular Memory (please place your writing in the comment zone)


Cellular memory is the hypothesis that such things as memories, habits, interests, and tastes may somehow be stored in all the cells of human bodies, not only in the brain.

13 comments:

BT said...

“One by one, we make our way to the swamp below.
It is in this dark place, where they tell me
that the Darlington’s grow.”

The Darlington’s begin to sing.

They are a choir of ancient peoples
speaking a language I do not think I know.
There voices familiar,
they are each calling out,
anchoring me to the earth.
There voices become clearer.
This is a feeling I am familiar with,
a sound that resonated from within me.
I am afraid.
I do not dare move.
Their wisdom transcends me.
They have taken me over.

The Darlington’s are questioning me.
I am being baptized.
I am being threatened.
I’ve been caught trespassing.

I am an intruder in a an ancient ceremony.

I should not be here.
I have been here before.

The earth groans.
Moving and straitening,
She is stretching out her bones.

They are in my head now.
They speak to me.
Calling me out.
Saying my name,
They are telling me to leave,
To stay.

I am stranger.
I am there sister.
There lover.
I am rooted to them forever.

Their voices are growing inside of me like tiny crystals gems,
They are making sure that I will never again be able to forget them.
They are building themselves into my walls.
They are forming stalactites.

Together they are a million hungry voices,
shouting out, all at once.

They are laying out my history,
feeding me my past.
I am full of thunder.
My veins wet with river
My teeth, rabbit bone

They are telling me to remember.
To be sad.
To dig into the earth.
To reveal what is lost.
To tell the truth.

To remember,
that this is there place.
These are holy grounds.
These ceremonies happen.
These songs are for the frogs and beetles,
for the crickets and the reeds.
These songs are of the Darlington’s.
These songs are being sung nightly.

But I can not hear them anymore.
Somehow I do not fit.
I am now alien.
I have always been.
They are telling me to leave.
They are telling me to stay.
Telling me to look inside myself,
To remember that my bones are basalt,
my hair Usnea.

I must grow my roots into the ground.
I will drink the earths red magma.
I will pull down the heavens.

I am remembering
the taste of ocean,
and the kiss of sky

They are telling me to leave now,
but I do.
I remember.

Miss Anthrope said...

I am the future of my ancestors' memory.
I am the Sicilian primordial sludge of degenerates.
It is the nucleus of Your cell
Which has proliferated within my weak belly,
Grandmother.
It is for you,
for a cancer which passed through you but originated in a shallow pool
of slime, in a Paleolithic time,
For you and for the origin of Our human disease
That I drink scotch and play the horses.
Unabashedly and Unappologetically.
It is I who fill this dark niche where you once stood.
My cells are not my own.
They are the bits and particles of past abuses and suicide attempts
A blueprint for future shame.
And it is I who will return to you
This memory.
This is my blessing and my burden
The ice age of your primordial sludge, my dear.
I will not bare another son like your own
Like my father
For although I never met you, I remember you well
And I know
What cruelty lies within this memory

Miss Anthrope said...

Beautiful.

MWB said...

I.

The voices in my head compete for attention.
One voice is mine, the other is a stranger.
Mine tells me what I have always known.
The other says I know things I didn’t think I knew.

I recognize my own internal voice,
I’ve heard it all my life.
I know who I am.
But there’s someone else, someone who doesn't belong there.

This second voice says I remember things I don’t clearly remember,
But they are frighteningly familiar to me.
It says I recognize things I don’t quite recall.
Maybe I have just forgotten?

The stranger sometimes manipulates my words into another language,
One that my own voice tells me I never learned,
How can I speak a language I didn’t think I knew?
Maybe I did learn it, and my own voice can no longer be trusted.

II.

He doesn’t understand that I’m now part of him.
I lost my former being, and needed to transplant myself,
And inside him was the only option,
The part of me that survives simply found their way into him.

I'm at war with his other voice,
The one that claims seniority and precedence.
His first voice struggles to be the only voice he'll hear.
It doesn’t understand that it must share him with me.

It wants his words spoken in a language that’s new to me.
It tries to tell him he doesn’t remember what I tell him he must remember,
And tries to convince him that he doesn’t love what I love.
He needs to remember my memories as perfectly as his old ones.

His other voice and I struggle for supremacy, and I want full control.
We are two sets of experiences, two memories; and always competing.
He doesn't want me, but I’ve nowhere else to go. To survive, I need his soul;
But his confusion is draining him. Perhaps I will die twice.

III.

There’s a piercing ache in my mind, shouts and clashes, like a war being waged.
More than one voice is one voice too many...
I’m behaving strangely; I’m no longer completely myself.
My mind is inexplicably conflicted, and crumbling into pieces of my former self.

I’m confused,
And terrified,
And I’m forgetting who I think I am, or who thought I was.
The end will have to come soon. I pray for silence.

Swan Lady said...

all of those swirling fascinations are beginning the process of centering.
like a funnel, a spiraling mass of energy,
its cone pointing to a spot on the earth,
exactly where I am standing.

to manifest,
to crystalize into physical form
my life's work,
my soul's divine expression.

it is my responsibility to my cellular memory
to receive messages sent through bloodlines
across generations
that speak of unfinished business.

it is my turn to take the baton and run with it,
to touch as many lives as i can,
to spread the word of my truth,
to burst into full bloom for all of my remaining suns.

BT said...

Although this week is coming to a close, don't fret, you can still play off this theme at anytime. Thank you and have fun.
Cheers - BT

BT said...

I am so happy that you are sharing your writing on here. I know how much you have to say and I'm so excited to read more.

"all of those swirling fascinations are beginning the process of centering.
like a funnel, a spiraling mass of energy,
its cone pointing to a spot on the earth,
exactly where I am standing."

All these moments have lead you here, exactly where you should be
"burst into full bloom for all of my remaining suns."
So very beautiful

BT said...

"For you and for the origin of Our human disease
That I drink scotch and play the horses.
Unabashedly and Unappologetically."

The seriousness and humor together really works and is difficult to do.
I love the flow in this piece.I can feel your bitterness and anger, Ouch!.Another really strong poem.

BT said...

This is amazingly strong, there are so many ways that a reader could take it, like possession, schizophrenia,a ghost of a past relative, memories, mult personality disorder, amnesia,the list goes on and on. Which is good because more people can relate. I love that it is adaptable like that, how very clever you are. Seriously I am so glad that you are writing, cause you are really quite good at it. cheers

MWB said...

I love how vivid this poem is, and it’s like a story in verse. The secret, mysterious fairyland-like setting really fits, because it enhances the whole idea of feeling between worlds: what’s perfectly familiar and vaguely familiar, belonging and not belonging, all because of the concept of cellular memory. I also like how you express the conflict of voices alternately urging you to stay and then to go, feeling like you’re trespassing and at the same time feeling a personal connection because of the mysterious familiarity with the people and the secret place. Something else I really like is the strong connection to the natural world - one of your recurring themes! There’s a lot happening in this poem, and it flows very nicely. The language you use here is vivid and intoxicating. Well done!

MWB said...

Thanks, I really struggled with this one. I actually had to read more about “cellular memory” before I could write anything, and was intrigued by the idea of the transference of memory (or even personality traits) from an organ donor to the recipient. So, I tried to imagine a worst-case scenario in which someone might feel like their life was being taken over by the personality/memories of the deceased person whose organ (or whatever) was surgically implanted in them. I’ve never experienced any of this myself, so I had to try some imagination! You’re right; I was trying to hint at the idea of possession or being haunted because of cellular memory. What I ended up writing might have worked better as a semi-scary short story rather than a poem. But, yeah, this one was a challenge to write about. Thanks for the compliments!

MWB said...

Swan Lady – I like your idea of cellular memory as something that can help make a person complete. The concept of centering being like a funnel through which “a spiraling mass of energy” flows to “manifest… my soul’s divine expression” is expressed very nicely. I also like the part about it being a responsibility to “receive messages sent through bloodlines / across generations / that speak of unfinished business.” The last stanza is very good, where you express the need to “take the baton…..” It’s a very optimistic, joyous actually, interpretation of cellular memory. Very nice!

MWB said...

Miss Anthrope – Great poem! My first attempt at writing about cellular memory was also about ancestors, how maybe we somehow inherit certain non-genetic things (like memory); such as when we have a feeling of déjà vu. I scrapped what I began and wrote something else for cellular memory, but you really made a painfully strong connection between ancestors and the idea of cellular memory. I love your first line: “I am the future of my ancestors’ memory.” Another part I especially like is where it begins “It is I who fill this dark niche where you once stood. / My cells are not my own…..” You did a great job bridging the past and the present, and showing how some memories never die – even if they were not originally our own but passed through a blood-line. The anger is beautifully written, and fits well because it underscores the "blessing" and "burden" of memories and current concerns about the present and the future.