Tiny Song # 2136: Down By The River

It is a strange phenomenon that when you sit down to write something about yourself, everyone assumes it to be true, and maybe it is, but maybe it isn't.  It's true that there was a red car down by the river, but whether or not it was a Cadillac, I don't really know because I'm not exactly sure what a Cadillac actually looks like even though I've seen many before, I've never bothered to memorize the difference between a Cadillac and say, a Buick, but the ring of the name creates an aura that a Buick does not.  It's true that I found a rabbit's head, but it wasn't by the side of the road, it was on the sidewalk.  At first, I thought it was a little hat someone had dropped, but then I saw that it wasn't a hat, but a head.  I walked by it, slowing just long enough to be disgusted before hurrying on.  But halfway down the block, I slowed again, reconsidering.  It seemed so heartless to leave it, and I've never wanted to be a heartless kind of person.  So I went back and had a closer look.  The head appeared to still have some life left in it, the eye glistening.  And when the breeze came up, the fur vibrated and gave me a shiver.  But then a fly landed right on the eyeball, and what was left of the rabbit didn't even blink.

Why are we so moved by stories "that really happened" and why are we so blind to the fictions of our memories?  I've heard it said that autobiographies were once shelved as fiction.  But nonfiction sells better, and memoirs, like "reality" television are hot commodities.  If I say it was a Cadillac when I'm not sure what kind of car it was, is it now a work of fiction?  What if enough years go by remembering that it was a Cadillac, that I don't even remember that I may have made it up?  Now that I am sure it was a Cadillac, is it a work of nonfiction?  And what about the rabbit's head?  Even though I buried it, it keeps coming back up, a fictional nonfiction, perhaps?  What do these obsessions show us about ourselves?  Why are we so concerned with the truth of a memory when it appears that there is no such thing?  What if I tell you that I didn't actually mistake the rabbit's head for a hat, but just a lump of fuzz, which sounds so clumsy?  Will you accuse me of being a liar?  Who said that what is posted here is the truth, anyway?  If memory serves me correct, I can truthfully say, not me.


  1. The archivist once claimed to be preserving evidence of the past -- a reliable source for reconstructing what had once happened. The historian would make a "his" "story" of this that would be true. Well, "true" until the post-modernist questioned the whole notion of a reliable record -- just as you have questioned your memory of the incident. Had you rushed home and made a "record" of it would that have been a "reliable" source for a future historian or just grist for another fiction writer? Of course, the historian has a set of standards for evaluating evidence, just as a law court has, and the literary author an allow each reader to decide if the story is "true," or more importantly, rings true. So the past is really gone just as the present is a blur....but the archives can make for good reading, however,

  2. Wow, love it! Keep it up! Love the music, you go girl!