It’s the year 2113. A major museum is running an exhibition on life and culture as it was in 2013. You’re asked to write an introduction for the show’s brochure. What will it say?
Photographers, artists, poets: show us RETROSPCTIVE.
Looking back on things
Isn’t always black or white;
No pun intended,
Although it does fit right.
We revisit time
Through photographs and memories
And relive a revised version of life
With an increase or decrease
Always. It’s never the same:
Either we had everything
The world had to offer
Or we had zero, nil, nothing.
Sepia, in our heads
Can become vivid HD
And the finest-hued memory
House a black and white zombie;
In retrospect, it wasn’t
The end of the world, we say
But only when we have forgotten
How it felt, live, that day.
In retrospect, it was
The happiest time in my life.
No it wasn’t – you just don’t feel, now,
All that pain and strife,
Which was the most that you’d known
Back in those days
And felt as bad as the new limits
Seem to nowadays.
I say “seem”
Because even this is relative. See,
This won’t be worst you will see.
But I’m not pessimistic:
No, Sir, not me –
I believe what you’ve lost
Is nothing to what you shall see.
Retrospective, Merriam-Webster says,
Can mean looking back on past situations
Or just as easily: an artist’s best work
(Over time) showed in exhibitions.
What does it mean to me?
I think it means this:
Never trust your altered view of the past –