Melodies of Bygone Memories

by Christina Brauer

My beloved winged lyricist

– Up there! in a nearby crown.

How sorely my grave heart has missed

Your tunes, light-hearted but profound.

There in the morning frost you sit,

Awaiting warmer days of spring.

Head held with pride and softly lit

When in the dusky light you sing.

But of what I cannot grasp.

I merely know what I perceive:

Sweet ballads of the times that passed,

Sound like home, lovely and bright,

Like bells that mark the end of night,

Fill me with sorrow,

Deep blue woe

When I think, I think of home.

And in my melancholia

I hear the voices from afar:

Children’s laughter

now so distant

Slips away

and now so foreign.

Fearful dread as life goes on:

Death of the past, oblivion.

– But that whistling sound so near,

This old familiar atmosphere

Ignites amongst the twilight grief

A spark of joy, so brief –

But leaves behind

Nostalgia of the cruellest kind

In that heartless certainty

That there is no rewind.

So I yearn and yearn in vain

For happiness, once so mundane.

And I’ve never understood

How something could

Be the cause of yearning

Of paralysing pain that’s burning

In my chest and all the while

also make me smile.

A glimpse of wisdom keeps me sound:

The present’s worth lies in the future,

In retrospective thoughts that nurture

And brace my loose roots in the ground.

Now in the grief that’s left behind

And in the remaining ache I find

Gratitude for what once was,

For value in moments, I believe,

Is measured in yearning, measured in grief.

So I’d rather feel this pain forever

Than to forget it altogether.

And though home is so far away,

You remind me every day.

So sing for me each morn and night.

‘cross from my window you’re in sight.

I’ll gladly listen, listen well

To anecdotes you seem to tell.

Oh beloved winged lyricist,

You fill my heavy heart with bliss.

How blessed I am you chose this spot

Right there on that bare tree top.


Author bio: Christina Brauer is a 4th-semester student who studies Anglophone Studies and Kommunikationswissenschaft and is fascinated by any kind of mythology; Greek, Norse, Celtic – you name it!

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