If you’re an antique shop frequenter, or you visit the charities for new bits and pieces, it’s a nice thought to know the chair you sit on, or the desk where you write, once belonged to someone else. Perhaps, this someone else pursued the same dreams as you, fuelled their ambitions similar to yours, years ago. Or, perhaps, this someone else failed in meeting their goals, unsuccessfully met their measure, and rid themselves of the very thing that reminded them so. Nonetheless, the things we buy second, third or fourth-hand are often rich with character. Scuffed to detail the past frustration, pristine to show us care it once had.
Chris Szeto kindly let us share The Forgetting Shop with our followers and it’s a wonderfully written poem. There’s a personal feel to this, a shop that can be easily pictured, a theme we can all relate to and it speaks the truth, down to the bone.
Through the windows of these shops, harbouring their older ware, there’s a thousand stories to tell; while this poem introduces us to the idea, it takes us further afterwards, knowing not only do the shops fill with stock, but the hearts of previous owners empty because of it. Some are good memories, some are bad, but without a doubt, there’s a lot to tell from the inventory, and this poem portrays that beautifully.
The Forgetting Shop
On Oak & Willow stands an antique shop,
Where people come to pawn their childhood dreams,
Or sell outright bad memories, regrets,
& all their hopes that tattered at the seams.
Old wedding rings a couple never wore,
New baby clothes the parents threw away,
Some photographs from trips we never took,
& lovers’ notes from when I should have stayed.
Each day I pass, the inventory grows,
All gathered in one cold and empty space,
No longer filling room within our hearts,
The shadow of their absence takes their place.