memories & ghosts

And so I asked her, “How do I move on from memories that I can barely remember, but those that continue to haunt me each day?” Her answer was quaint, motherly even, but fighting fear with fear isn’t exactly how it works; at least I don’t think so.

She told me to not only face my memories, but to scare them instead. The idea of scaring our own memories away seems like some children’s fantasy story with blood-red pages and clever allusions, but life is a horrible example of fiction; it lacks the beauty that is embedded into the pages of prose. Reality doesn’t possess the ability to create beautiful moments and dialogue at the drop of a hat, let alone after hours of practice and planning. So aside from verisimilitude in our stories and dramatic words in real life, I’m led back to ghosts, and the crippling fear of fear.

She said to come to Massachusetts where the ghosts are a plenty. Sitting and drinking at bars, watching the games at Fenway: the ghosts are everywhere. Our ghosts could haunt each other for a change and give us the vacation we’ve deserved since childhood. A relaxation from our minds of exploding synapses. “We will destroy them all,” she says and I feel as if I can already hear her ghost whispering to me from three thousand miles away.

So which do I conquer first, memories or fear? Are they one in the same? Memories are ghosts and ghosts are memories, but when you bring fear into the equation it becomes an unbearable, bloody mess. I feel like a king who can never seem to get my hands clean. Where does the magic stop and the truth begin? I fear that there is no definite end to either and much like our memories we will wander like ghosts, waiting to haunt the next asshole that tries to live without fear.

Stacey Renberg

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