These Memories

These memories
Unfairly risen from distant, awkward past
Shimmer on horizon
Distort the view

From murky mirror in rusty frame
Hint at what once was
Mar the recollections
With clouded silvered glass
And cobwebs draped in ornate corners

Eyes focused forward
We march toward the future
But our boot laces
Like these memories
Remain entangled in the thickets
From where we tread before

© 2019 John P. M. Dillon


(Memory is many long mirrors)
Corridor mirrors reflecting doors
Quietly opening
                        and then
Noiselessly closing,
Letting wet hats and faces
In from the rain.

(Memory is everything
            Occurring in mirrors)
Closet doors open;
Closet mirrors twist a smile and face
With a great arm telescoped to the knob.

A hundred facets trace
Light shooting back into the prismed dark
To catch and place
Hall mirrors over and over showing
Faces sadly bending under hats into the rain.

 - Gay Street, Greenwich Village, 1960

When in 1960 I don’t know, so arbitrarily setting it to New Year’s Day.

The House of Mirrors

I found this story in my archives, dated 1998. Warning: it has some vulgar language and scenes near the end.

She loved mirrors. Every room in the house had two if not three. They were round, oval, square, rectangular, faded, new, clear, gold leaf stained, and cracked. There were fragments of mirrors, and mirrors left over from other people’s bedrooms and bathrooms. The long mirrors were used to check skirt lengths and shoes, the round ones reflected the landscapes outside the window so she wouldn’t have to turn around in the chair if the view was the other way. The were hand mirrors, magnifying mirrors, and mirrors you could no longer see yourself in, so faint was the backing. It is a particularly sobering experience to look into a mirror and see a triangle of cracked plaster where your mouth should be. Continue reading “The House of Mirrors”