A Memory of the Future

Elizabeth Spires

It was the title that interested me about this book, though it appears there may be hundreds of books with this title or slight variants of it so it’s entirely possible it reminded me of some other work I heard about in the past. Most of the poems here didn’t draw me in very far, but the title poem was worth it for me.

A Memory of the Future
I will say tree, not pine tree.
I will say flower, not forsythia.
I will see birds, many birds,
flying in four directions.

Then rock and cloud will be
lost. Spring will be lost.
And, most terribly,
your name will be lost.

I will revel in a world
no longer particular.
A world made vague,
as if by fog. But not fog.

Vaguely aware,
I will wander at will.
I will wade deeper
into wide water.

You’ll see me, there,
out by the horizon,
an old gray thing
who finally knows

gray is the most beautiful color.