Tuesday, September 27

Small Reminders

© Tim Yankosky
On our kitchen’s message board there’s an old piece of paper, full of holes. It’s a photocopy of a photocopy of a poem I found many years ago in a children’s poetry anthology at the local library. It says:

The scene of the crime
was a goldfish bowl
goldfish were kept
in the bowl at the time:

that was the scene
and that was the crime
         (Goldfish / Alan Jackson)
Youth is blessed with the audacity to dream, but many of those dreams perish later on without strong conviction and maintenance. And I don’t mean just dreams about our own accomplishments, but those grand dreams of another kind - the utopian ones.

© Laurence Yang
Lennon’s “Imagine” still fills us with a fuzzy feeling. We still maintain some of our convictions, but our cynicism and life experience often nibble at them. Until something comes along and with its sweet innocence breaths life back into them; something like an object, a smell, a person, a picture, words we’ve overheard. In my case, it is this old copy of a kids’ poem about goldfish.

I love this poem for its unassuming beauty and simplicity (something often found in kids’ books), but mostly because it serves as one of my small reminders.

With my preferred interpretation of ”goldfish were kept in the bowl at the time” as if spoken from a better future, it appeals to my childish need to believe in human compassion and that things do and will get better; one day we will extend rights to all others, people and animals. Naive? Sure! But sometimes when I see this old piece of paper, I can even have one of those lovely philosophical chats with our son and his friends about living according to ones convictions, making a difference; at least try, damn it. If not you, the young, then who? And I almost sound convincing.


More info:

The Poem “Goldfish” can be found in the kids’ poetry collection Read Me 2: A Poem for Every Day of the Year” at  Amazon UK & Amazon.com

See more work by the hugely talented Tim Yankosky on his website or visit the Three Graces Gallery's blog page relating to him

This charming picture of a little girl walking a goldfish (ink, watercolour and acrylic on wood) was drawn by Lawrence Young for a friend. See more of his work on his blog BlowAtLife.com

This image of fish swimming freely is a wood print by a 1950s Japanese artist named Bakufu; taken from the website of the NY galery for Japanese art "Ronin Gallery".

1 comment:

  1. I see what you mean about the need for small reminders. It made me think...



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