Sep 2, 2006

the self and its memory

It's heavy, emotional going, but you really should read the teacher/ref/poet's latest, Buying my grandmother candy.
So her sense of humor was still there, and I was hopeful that she had a memory. Not a memory of me...I knew that was too much...but a memory of the Colorado mountain house we both loved.

"Grandma, I loved visiting you in Colorado. Some of my best childhood memories are there. I loved going up there and eating your toll house cookies."

"Oh! I'm sorry I didn't make any cookies for you. I didn't know you were coming."

That's about when it hit me...Grandma's not gone. She's still Grandma, with the same personality and temperament--the sense of humor, the kindness, the desire to be a great hostess. It's just that her memories are gone.

And that's weird. Can you still be who you are without your memories?


pouw said...

I was thinking of Sacks' writing as well - what a teacher here calls "literature in science." He will be coming to the USC campus in a few months to speak; I'll let you know how it goes.

Jim Anderson said...

Most excellent. Sacks is a great writer and a great human being.