I happened to be in someone’s car the other day and their preferred listening is NPR. Before I could change the station, I heard this phrase that I’ve replayed many times in my head this past weekend….”It’s hard to forget (about the crime) when the crime scene is your own body.”
Man, that’s a statement, isn’t? It was attributed to an artist, a woman who purportedly physically abused (or at last was “mean to”) her male child as some kind of repeat of her own childhood. That saddens me greatly. I have never once wished to visit my childhood upon my children or on anyone’s children for that matter. In fact, if I prayed, it would be that this never happen again, ever, to any child and why does typing these words make me cry even now???
The interviewee was commenting on his own book, while referring to this woman artist, and said that she had often made the remark that she could “still hear” her abuser’s voice in her head. Until I heard that statement, I’d never thought of it that way. Never named the devil, so to speak. But I understood immediately. I also replay the words in my head, rewind, hear it again, like some form of torture, trying to decipher at what point, and who decided, that it should be me who was to be tortured.
Life is so fucked up. The things I want to forget, I can’t. Not the smell of the pool water when I tried to save my son. Not those words of ‘sex’ close in my ear. But the things I wish I could remember are gone, whispered into the wind so faintly that I can’t even fathom in what context I might have heard them. My grandmother’s many words over the years, the way my lover’s mouth felt on the last time she made love to me, the hundreds upon hundreds of photographs I never took, would never need or so I thought, and look at me now with barely any memories, a ton of forever questions, and scarcely any photos to soothe my aching heart with.
Simply another manner of torture.