Remember? Are you able to recall?
One of September’s summery flashbacks
it was all English seaside and nostalgia
so suitably right with that light on the water
and Polaroid’s real feel retro mode
fun, clunky, unpredictable
we hunkered down in the shade
to watch and wait as each fresh off the picture press
tickled us pinker than candy floss
and just at the height of merriment, power petered out
between roller and tongue, a half-hearted whir
and like a botched breach birth, the print was wrenched free

there we were, bamboozled by all that undeveloped ink
just three foreground contours, prone perhaps in profile
a horizon blanketed in muddy browns
– Well! not a single memory can be waste paper now
digital has performed where manual mode left off
here you can see a Martian maritime limbo
the kind of off-planet landscape I’m stuck in
with [out] you

[Related post:Jamming with a Polaroid Spectra]

One month since Martin’s death and feeling just a little bit more fluid now and able to join up with others in this Sundays’ Poetry Pantry

24 thoughts on “Stuck

  1. sometimes, the memories collide and stick and jam – and interestingly, or not, it’s what we choose to do, once we’ve caught our breath; and so, here, the choice to make the best of it – and still create something to treasure …

    and I admit, although this poem is borne of grief and loss (for which you have my sympathies) – I like the conversational tone, the intimacy, which offers us, as “independent” readers, several options to consider … whether it’s a memory, some recent outing etc. …. so there is another layer that adds to the complexity here … brings it additional depth and focus.

    all in all, a very wonderful poem and self-expression —> I hope it helps you to remember, treasure, and also grieve, but allow for solace and comfort Laura.

      1. Even though it is highly personal Laura, clearly, there is still a universality to it, that makes it accessible and heartfelt, to anyone; for surely, if not for the particular details itself, but because we have all experienced similar – and this means, the poem has transcendent qualities.

  2. I like what Pat wrote in one of her comments about how the poem has transcendent qualities. I have my own memories of Polaroids and your poem brought some of them to mind.

  3. Wonderful image – fits with your comment about feeling more fluid. Always fun to read your alliterative style 🙂 Thinking of you each day. ~J

    1. Had to make something of the undeveloped image – it was part of that day and a foretaste too of the near future. Appreciate your appreciate my style – am alliterative by second nature it seems!

  4. Ah, it’s good to see you writing… memories don’t fade… they mellow like a wine opened to breathe before serving. I hold you in my thoughts.

  5. I can feel the grieving in these words. Those memories definitely need to be written. I am so sorry for your loss really…very hard, and I am hoping that in some way writing helps.

    1. Writing has been a resource for feeling and naming and the poetry group at PU has been a safe and comforting place to speak grief -thank you for hosting

  6. A beautiful poem on a fascinating topic. KI remember having lots of fun with Polaroids, and some of them have lasted fairly well. But – having followed the link to your ra – are you saying such cameras are still made and used? Amazing! And yes, a form of artistry no doubt.

    I’m glad you have come back here. When I was widowed six years ago (can it be so long already?!) I used to say to myself, ‘What on earth do people do who aren’t poets?’ We can’t not take that journey of grief, but the poetry did help me through it.

    1. There are new and used polaroids to be had at Polaroid Originals – mine is 80s and I feel as vintage as the shots they spit out.

      We have something in common now besides poetry and I was reassured by your comment – totality of silent suffering is not for us. Thank you for all your encouragement

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