The “AND I QUOTE” prompts will take a quotation from some random person of note and be the basis for our poetry. We’ve used this idea to some great effect in the past, so if it ain’t broke…

Today’s quote:

“If you wish to forget anything on the spot, make a note that this
thing is to be remembered.” ~Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

You are asked to write about something you’ve forgotten. Write of something you wish you could forget. Or write a memory that has stayed with you for a long time that even “without a note,” you’ve remembered.



It’s not so much in the forgetting,
nor even in the retrieving.
See, it’s in the connecting.
Though my brain is smallish,
that which is stored


is far too often not perceiving
that which is stored


The nerve!
Apparently my data is shy –
certified tongue-tied.
Unwilling to bond with
or respond to
the other facts and files
in my brain’s adjacent aisles.
They may as well be miles apart.

Oh the trials that stem
from data that scatters.
It matters.

© Marie Elena Good, 2018




My memory is dotted with crisp images
that have ingrained into the depth of my soul.
I have no control over them; they lay dormant,
only to bubble to the surface when I least expect.
Trying in vain to relinquish these old feelings,
I reel with remorse, this sad course I contemplate
leaves me silent and still and alone.
And so, I am left kneeling in supplication,
a broad brush of despair paints me.
Pagliacci’s clown cries out from within, making a spectacle
of my mirth and mired muse. My resolution
refuses to take hold; these memories dominate me.
It is too late. Love languishes.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

128 thoughts on “PROMPT #211 – “AND I QUOTE” – INSTALLMENT #1

  1. This was a perfect prompt to add a third verse to a hymn I’ve been working on. The first verse came to me straight from God. I mean, I was in the middle of writing something else, and the words and the melody burst out my mouth and on the page. Not to say that makes it terrific poetry, but it was an amazing experience!

    Verse 1:
    Oh what joy is mine, when on Jesus I recline
    Trusting in His word to be my all
    I on Him depend, He will always defend
    Jesus is my all in all

    Jesus, my Jesus, Jesus is my all in all
    Oh Jesus, my Jesus, He will always answer when I call

    Verse 2:
    I’ve got mountain to climb, and valleys in between
    Times the road ahead will be quite rough
    But with God by my side, I shall never fear
    Trusting Jesus is enough.

    How can I e’er forget all his benefits
    Your love has transformed all my tears
    I’ve learned to let go, the more of You I know
    You always have been, always will be, near

  2. Destructive memories crawl on my skin
    Creating nothing but chaos within.
    Longing to forget what I have lived,
    I beg and I plead, no longer believe
    that forgetfulness will ever be mine.

    But oh for the faith to remember and cling
    to the promises of the One true King
    In whose love is new life
    No longer bound by the strife
    of memories that torment and sting.

  3. When You’re Four

    You’re told
    not to run
    but the shadow
    of the moon
    can chase you
    up the stairs

    to where your mamma
    is standing
    with open arms

    so you hide
    your wet eyes
    in drying apron folds

    letting her gentle hand
    warm your back
    and shush your cries

    till she can make
    the moon go back
    into the sky

    and your bites
    into warm cookies
    leave the only moon
    your mamma sees

    as she lets your giggles
    run down the stairs.

  4. Relief in Grief

    Empty pain surroundin’ an achin’ heart
    Prayin’ on a chance, we could all restart
    Lessons you taught me, on purpose and love
    Trust in a Father of heaven above
    Seein’ the good of all contemplations
    Makin’ the best of all situations

    So tell me now why I’m feelin’ so worn
    Why my hearts so restless, tired and torn
    Relief that you’ll never suffer again
    But grief that our kinship came to this end

    Our memories can never escape me
    Even though I try they tend to shape me
    I hear your voice and see you in my dreams
    Laugh aloud at our crazy braided schemes
    Just when I think I’ve forgotten the pain
    Heaven reminds me with the fallin’ rain

    Please tell me now why I’m feelin’ so worn
    Why my hearts so restless, tired and torn
    Relief that you’ll never suffer again
    But grief that our kinship came to this end

    I wish I could tell you just one more time
    I pray for and love you all of the time
    A day will come when it all will come true
    This old heart will stop and stop missin’ you
    Until that time, I’ll just do what I do
    Lookin’ for an angel, resemblin’ you

    Lord tell me now why I’m feeling so worn
    Why my hearts so restless, tired and torn
    Relief that you’ll never suffer again
    But grief that our kinship came to this end

  5. The Art of Forgetting

    They say a man’s brain resets each night and starts afresh in the morning
    We go to sleep and in the deep all is wiped away without warning
    I find it absurd that such a thing is in the realm of possibility
    At the same time I find it strange that I can’t recall most of yesterday
    Is it possible they could be right?

    I do tend to forget that which is not important
    Or that which is, at the time, not pertinent
    I safely tuck away much of the pain of the past
    For dwelling on it gets me nowhere fast
    But resetting and forgetting is not my thing
    I would say neglecting has a better ring
    ‘Cause when I least expect it, it rears its head
    That thing I thought
    That I forgot
    Comes raging back instead

  6. Maybe You Should Call Me

    I put your name on that list
    That list of people in my head
    That list I didn’t write on paper
    Because I didn’t want to misplace that list
    Or clutter my desk with that list
    Or lose that list among the pictures
    Hanging on the fridge
    I put your name on that mental list
    Of people I should call, text, e-mail –
    Or maybe even write to (gasp!)
    I put your name on the top of that list,
    That infinite list, growing ever longer
    Curling around in my little gray cells
    Ending up filed away under ‘Good Intentions’

  7. Mnemonics

    In eighth grade, my reading teacher,
    making a point about our memories,
    drew the number 8 diagonally
    in the top right-hand corner
    of the chalkboard. He said,
    “You’ll always remember this.”

    At the end of the year,
    he did it again.
    I had forgotten.
    But the second time stuck.
    It’s been over forty years
    and I still remember it.

    Now I can’t even remember
    what I put in the microwave
    a few minutes ago.

  8. My mother’s best friend as she aged worked especially hard on forgetting the difficult and painful parts of her life. Still, when we’d talk sometimes, she would weep soundlessly. What caused it? “I don’t recall,” she’d say, “some silliness.” I’m guessing she did recall and it wasn’t silly at all. I have some of those recollections myself these days. This is a sonnet for Carrie.


    Something inside me knew what I’d forgot.
    Something lay hidden under sheets of loss.
    Something so necessary to the plot
    of my life that I feel my signals cross.

    Sometimes his eyes appear unbidden blue.
    Sometimes a smile, a laugh, a hand, a touch.
    Sometimes I’m busy doing things I do,
    and I am flattened that I’ve lost so much.

    Some things I’ve learned have helped me to erase
    entireties of memories, youth’s hope,
    but sometimes in my dreams I see his face
    and wake unlearned of how I am to cope.

    Sometimes something inside me shows the way
    I must forget to live another day.

  9. Witness, Survivor

    When September 11th is mentioned,
    whether in conversation or in
    a segment of news, I see them.
    Those buildings. Flames shoot
    out at impact of plane crash.
    My building first. Watch it
    vanish, crumble into dusty
    debris. Every man and woman
    on this bus watches in horror,
    mouths agape. Second building
    falls, people jump from windows.
    Sand stark as a desert floor.  Only
    the beginning of nightmares 
    to come.  I wish I could forget; 
    I know I never will.

  10. Here’s a re-run – posted almost a year ago but fittin’ I think.

    Memories and Fence Lines
    By David De Jong
    Tuesday, November 7, 2017

    Old memories like fence lines part the field
    Tendin’ and mendin’, attemptin’ to yield
    Some sort of order and an open view
    But after all the fixin’ some slip through

    Always checkin’ the strands to see they’re tight
    Lest somethin’ wanders away in the night
    The older the wire, the less it holds
    Tattered webs that break, before they can fold

    Old corner post still holdin’ its domain
    Half buried in sediment flushed by rain
    Overgrown by persistent brome and weeds
    Hidin’ barbs, and splinters, forgotten seeds

    Once trimmed and taught, posts in a stately row
    Garnerin’ looks from last year’s ol’ scare crow
    Perfectin’ his stare while feelin’ his oats
    Dazed by a reflection of eight old goats

    Not sure what was in mind while lookin’ back
    Some of the strands are gone and won’t come back
    Some stock broke free and wanders, aimlessly
    While some tends to linger, auspiciously

    Like a trusted horse on a narrow road
    Let lose the reins and let him take the load
    Instinct will carry you back when you need
    Let you see across, give the fence a read

    Count your blessin’s if your wire still holds
    And keeps your memories between the folds

    Original photo and posting here 🙂


    You weren’t fixing on leaving,
    you had other plans.
    But, God laughed
    and you were gone. A memory
    written ad nauseum,
    causing hearts to ache
    at each re-telling. Eyes
    swelling with tears
    laced with fears of folks forgetting.
    It’s hitting home the more
    distance passes and a trace of your face
    flashes in my mind from time-to-time.
    You are nine years in passing
    and I keep amassing poems
    well long after you’re gone.
    And I find my life moves on.

    © Walter J. Wojtanik – 2018

  12. Apologies

    He marks the square
    on the calendar,
    and writes the time and place,
    hangs it on the fridge by magnet,
    right before his face,
    where every day he passes by,
    a thousand times and more,
    then wakes one day,
    and dresses, readies,
    walks out, locks the door,
    drives miles, and smiles and
    says, “I’m here,”, so proud
    that he’s on time.
    He’s told, “No, not today,
    next week. “

    With pleasantry sublime,
    he offers an apology,
    tho really none is needed,
    except perhaps a ‘Sorry… ’
    to his calendar unheeded.

    © Damon Dean, 2018

  13. Damon, I may very well become this character–well on my way. I love the light-heartedness and charm of this situation and the gentleman who lives it. Nice work, my friend.

    • Yes, Damon. What the ladies said! You do splay a bit of whimsy here. You don’t know how much joy you and all of these other amazing poets have brought to M.E. and me by infusing your lives back into this garden. You are all genuinely brilliant.

      • M.E. couldn’t agree more, Walt. 😉

        Damon, this poem’s cadence, rhyme, and lighthearted way of expressing and viewing this situation totally warms my heart. You sure do know how to draw us in.

  14. I’m glad I didn’t forget to come read the prompt, and to post a small offering…because I’ve read some fantastic poetry offered to this prompt. Some words shared we should long remember. I must return to the call of the grant application and the many words I still need to etch into gigabyte memory…so I don’t have time to comment on each poem, though I wish I could. ❤ and 🙂 to all!



    He senses he knew her way back when,
    but he is not quite sure. Quite forgetful is he,
    she is a beauty he had once known. He loves
    her, he thinks. But he’s not quite sure. He
    seems to show a spark of familiarity. He begins
    to connect and then rapidly fades. He hates to
    let it show. He loves, then he begins to forget.

    © Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

    When he loves, he begins to forget.
    ~ taken from “A Man In His Life” by Yehuda Amichai


    In my office I am aware,
    there are cookies being baked down there.
    I can not see them, but I’m sure
    and thoughts of Momma still endure.

    I remember Momma’s kitchen
    and come November she’d be itchin’
    to cream the butter, clean the pans,
    and sprinkle flour on her hands,

    everything in preparation
    for our Christmas celebration.
    And baking for what seemed like days
    to place her cookies on display.

    But, there’s cookies being baked down there,
    and their aroma takes me back, I swear.
    The missus works from Momma’s book
    and that’s the way she likes to cook.

    Cut-out cookies – frosted, sprinkled,
    made by hands both soft and wrinkled,
    Nanaimo bars and ginger bread,
    the smell of those goes to my head.

    Thumb-print cookies (filled with jelly)
    are just the tonic for my belly!
    They’re so like Momma’s, I can tell,
    by the scrumptious way they smell!

    These Christmas cookies are a treat, and
    the proof of them is in the eatin’.
    I just can’t wait to sneak a few,
    and savor every bite and chew.

    I call the missus “Momma” now,
    and she surely has her way and how.
    She takes me back in memory’s pause,
    because I am (her) Santa Claus.

  18. Something’s Brewing
    © 2008 Linda M. Rhinehart Neas

    Following the trail into the dark cavern
    of the Unknown, the intrepid
    traveler wiggles through the barriers
    of time and space
    entering the hermitage

    The traveler becomes one
    with the stillness,
    lingering enneadic months
    the flush of reality
    sweeps her into the light

    Forgetting all –
    she begins again

  19. I’m late to the game again … I had to wait for this one to work itself out in my head first.

    A Wander

    The idea that I might wander lonely,
    be seduced by a ramble,
    not in a breathless city, but
    to traverse the nature of poetry.
    To forget that I am.
    That I am.

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