Lisa Ludden


Pathology of Memory


If you begin pulling apart, composing out of order, the underbelly will surprise you.

In the intricate mapping and shading, synapses weaken. Rootless narrative
coiled dormant, wound dead.

Memories bond to objects, turning the intangible, tangible. Transfiguring
the relic in your hand to say I made, I earned, I won, I remember.

If memory is physically encoded, then I’m starting to understand what
visceral means. The way my throat locks and burns

this morning as I clasp your gold earrings, X’s in motion,
their double-helix unwinding.

Facing the mirror, there is this rush of you, running on the electric current of you,
until I return to the same refrain:

how dying shreds the life we gather.





lisa ludden

Lisa Ludden lives, writes, and teaches in Northern California. She is the author of the chapbook Palebound (Flutter Press). Her poems appear in Natural Bridge, the Plath Poetry Project, LUMINA Online, and elsewhere. She is currently at work on her first full-length book of poems.