Monday, April 11, 2011

♥ Writing Prompt: Ode to [Past Selves/Doppelgangers], in Five Parts



For those not in the know, April is National Poetry Month.  In celebration, The Olivetree Review is doing daily writing prompts for the whole month.  If you're interested in participating, send your words along to olivetreereview@gmail.com or on our Facebook page!

As Publicity Manager for the Hunter College literary arts journal, I thought I'd offer my own little vignettes here.  Keep checking back throughout the next couple weeks for more!



Ode to [Past Selves/Doppelgangers], in Five Parts

I.
I keep a photo on the fridge,
not as a reminder to be
"sexy by summer"
(though that isn't a bad idea)
but just to remind me
to just be.
A visual token of someone I used to be,
the 17 year-old smiles back
almost mocking,
daring me to be just as confident as she is
(was?):
"Nothing in your life will ever be as good as this," she seems to say
I slam the freezer door and hope
she falls on her face.

II.
All I have of the past I keep in journals and pictures
but the one thing I cherish most
is real
(was real)
something/someone tangible, but now lays in decay in a box
like these yellowed papers.
How is it that these things are more permanent
than you'll ever be?

III.
I was watching How I Met Your Mother the other night
and started thinking about doppelgangers
Would Past Jess have liked how Present Jess turned out? 
What would she say if we ever met?
In some alternate universe, does Past Jess still exist?
This is turning out to be more trippy/philosophical than I intended...

Maybe I shouldn't watch so much TV.

IV.
Sometimes, I forget myself.
I'm constantly trying to remember who I am,
what I'm interested in
I get to know myself through 
writing
dancing
watching
doing
but can never seem to get back to myself
Maybe it's part of growing up, but
maybe I don't want to grow up.

A part of me still feels 17, and a part of me wishes I still were.

V.
I still get carded at bars.
I got hit on by three different older men in the same day, 
all asking my age
and admitting later they thought I was 16/17.
I should be creeped out by this
but honestly?
I was touched (not like that).

Maybe there's an alternate universe, after all.  An "in-between," where 23 meets 17, only to later meet skeevy older men.  

Maybe that's not such a bad place to be.  
(well, minus the older men.)


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