I’v been having a hard time, lately, remembering what it was like on the planet I’m from. We had a moon, I think, similar to this moon, only smaller and further away, leaving the ocean calm at times and smooth. I remember on the clearest moonless days, I could see to the horizon’s arch where the sea appeared to swell as if pregnant with life.
And there were birds. There were things that flew. But I forget their variety. Many of them preferred trees as they do here. I remember their feathers straining to lift them into the air. I think I can still hear that brushing sound, as if they painted their way onto the open canvas over my head.
I don’t remember waiting in secret to see them. I think they came willingly. They may have been our gods.
It’s the people I struggle to remember most. Did we have families there? A father? Mother? Siblings. I want to believe I had a father there, but I have no memory. I remember the smell of salty wood, diffuse blue starlight, a hand under my bottom and head. But there is no face or voice. Only the faint ocean sound, night-birds scattered along the sand.
This is the first time I’ve written this memory – this half-memory. It’s all I have left. By writing it down, I hope to learn what is metaphor and what is real. I hope to preserve my young weight pressing into the gravity of a planet I have no memory of leaving. I hope, if I come back to this moment, if I return to this vague beginning, I may find my existence begin to rebuild. Maybe a home with four windows and a pet of some kind. Maybe I’ll learn to name those birds. Maybe remember the taste of the sea – and the sea in the air. Goosebumps on the skin in a small wind.
I hope, if I come back enough, the hands under my body will begin to shift and turn me to the creature I am from. Maybe hear a word or two. Something about why I’m not there.