The Persistence of Memory (Spanish: La persistencia de la memoria; Catalan: La persistència de la memòria) is a 1931 painting by artist Salvador Dalí, and is one of his most recognizable works.
This is a re-post of a flash story first published on the Harper Collins, Authonomy Blog.
HAPPY NEW YEAR, Everyone!
One second more or less, will that make me richer or poorer in time? Yet, I happen to know decisions made in a split second, or perhaps, an incident that could occur in that time frame have the power to change everything. I try so hard to capture or speed up time, but it has its own pace despite my wishes.
So, I dip into time and try to exercise timelessness. Schrodinger’s Cat in my mind, I go to places my limited intelligence cannot comprehend. The heart does, and gives me directions into my past lives beyond my current third dimensional reality.
I’m a pagan girl at a time not recorded in history. I go to Göbeklitepe and dance to the tune of songs, sung by the pilgrims who come to the temple to worship nature, its flora and fauna. Surrounded by huge columns, with birds and animals carved into their ancient stones, I make offerings to the Gods and thank them for my blessings. A soldier takes my hand, puts a wreath of flowers on my head. We leave the temple and he takes me to his tent in the nearby hills.
Time changes. I’m in Africa, by the river Nile, crying tears of sorrow for my beloved Pharaoh. He has been taken ill and my life is at a standstill. All the medicines in the world cannot cure his ailment. They have poisoned him. There’s no antidote. His child in my belly, the heir to be born. I’m their next target, once my beloved is gone. I cannot leave him on his own and run away yet, but I know a nomad village where my child and I will be safe.
I delve into Ramayana, in the temples of Bali, and run to the sea where I wash my soul. I go to India and swim with my friends in the waters of Ganges, continue to Nepal and become the lady who ages as she descends the mountain in The Lost Horizon.
A courtesan in the Ming court. A Japanese geisha in love with Shogun. An Aborigine girl around Ayer’s Rock. A Maui singer in the Pacific, and a Polynesian who falls in love with a white man in Tahiti. I move on to the Island of Maui and see the volcano erupt in Hawaii. Many perish, but I’m saved by the fishermen. I make my way to the Americas.
Inca, Aztec and Maya, I play ball in the courts of Chichen Itza. I move down south to Bolivia and Peru, and let the wise people guide me through their knowledge and magic revealed in the books of Castaneda.
I go on to Europe, move in the courts of Arthur, Ferdinand and Napoleon. Sometimes I’m a slave, sometimes a heretic they must burn, a princess, a courtesan, a peasant, a revolutionary or an ordinary wife, struggling to raise a family. My Harem days in the Ottoman Court, come with a big return. I’m the mother of the Sultan’s second heir to the throne.
Does time whisk me back or thrust me forward? In Eden, I meet my great, great, and I don’t know how many times great, Grandmother sitting under the apple tree. She’s weeping, but there’s still love in her heart for me because I’m her great, great, and I don’t know how many times great, Granddaughter. The invisible ties of my mother’s mitochondrial DNA bring me to my origins. She hugs me and I fall asleep, weary of my travels.
I wake before my alarm-clock goes off. I rise and look in the mirror. I see so many faces I do not know. I blink and rub my eyes. They disappear. I watch my reflection watching me, and ask, “Who am I?”