memory of a place

Yesterday and today, on the bus passing Waterloo Park I realized it was the place where Richard used to walk with me down the creek pathway and we’d end up on the swings there. I think. I never went there in the daytime, or on my own steam; I’d hold Richard’s hand and abandon any knowledge of where I was, deliberately getting lost. I never remembered where the park was, what it was called, or how to get there, but only thought of it as the place where I would dazedly wander at 1am while holding his hand in the moonlight. So a sort of “magic place.”

It’s like what Hester Prynne of La Letra Escarlata says about enjoying the moment when her glasses fog up and she can’t see. And then the swings would take on this magic metaphoric quality. I remember having a vague epiphany that epiphanies were possible even if you didn’t know what they meant, or if they were small-scale, not visible to anyone else, and inexplicable. Kind of like, “I’m on a swing in this funky situation, in a slightly scuzzy park but that to me is a Magic Place transfigured by tree branches against the moonlit sky, and here I am connected to all the other points in time when I’ve been on a swing, going back and forth in place, and in my own head, going back and forth in time between those childhood times and any future times.” It was very strange that I could tell that in Richard’s head it was also a meaningful place and moment and he was trying to communicate something in particular, some epiphany or metaphor of his own, but I never knew what it was. All that mattered is that we were both in that imaginary space.

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