Today is Memorial Day in the United States. We’ve been watching classic war movies all weekend, Patton and The Longest Day and A Bridge Too Far. I’m thinking of my stepmother’s father, who campaigned in North Africa and Italy. I’m thinking of one uncle who served and came home with his humor and wits intact, and another who did not.
One set of parents is hosting a party to celebrate the hope of returning summer, another set is at the family plot cleaning graves and laying flowers. Both sides of memory are necessary, in my mind.
Part of what writers do is build creative narratives that interpret life, remember the past, reframe the present, and project into the future. Art is interpretation. Memory is selective. What we remember depends on who we are, and who we hope to be. When we stop telling stories, we start forgetting.
Today’s free fiction is Pamela Sargent’s “Too many memories” from Nature’s Futures division.
You already know what Dorothea’s most important insight was — that the reason our client had so much trouble with her memories was that she possessed no narrative structure on which to locate them.
“There’s no framework there,” Dorothea Singh said to me, “nothing to hang the memories on.”
Today, we are that framework.
Today is #MemorialDay — a day to honor the men and women who gave their lives for our great nation. Over 58,000 names are etched into the Vietnam #Veterans Memorial in #WashingtonDC in a moving tribute to those who died serving our country. It’s one of many memorials, cemeteries and battlefields across our country that help remind us of the extraordinary sacrifices made to keep us united and free. Photo by Thomas Kredo (www.sharetheexperience.org).