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Capital of Paraguay

The poem entitled Forgetfulness is all about a poet’s experience as he is growing old or literally elaborating how it is to be in a state of forgetfulness in terms of life’s experiences. The brain, as presented in the poem is man’s vulnerability or weakness. As man begins to age, his body and mind also starts to wither. In addition, it discusses some of the smallest things that are left forgotten or taken for granted which once used to lurk in some parts of the brain and the next thing you would know these thoughts are gone lurking in someone else’s brains.

The poet is a lover of literature because he has incorporated a lot of things in the poem, most of which come from different sources or maybe accumulated from reading texts, books, or any reading materials or just anything he has come across with his life. Those things or words that at first cannot be seen with a significant relevance in one way or the other become relatively connected in the poem. Thus, it can be said that he has a vast imagination.

I The name of the author is the first to go followed obediently by the title, the plot, the heartbreaking conclusion, the entire novel which suddenly becomes one you have never read, never even heard of, In the first stanza, it is discussed there that among the books that has been read by the person being referred to in the poem, the first thing that often gets neglected is the author, followed by the title of the novel. And soon after, the person proceeds in reading the whole texts; sooner or later it becomes nothing, as if it never existed. It can be compared to a man’s life here on earth.

Life is like a book wherein everything that we undergo is written or maybe pre-written for us by our Creator, so everything happens for a reason. As we grow older and reach our final last breath sooner or later our names will be forgotten, next is the life we lived and all the people we have interacted with in a past. As the next generations will emerge, the life we have lived will soon be non-existing. II as if, one by one, the memories you used to harbor decided to retire to the southern hemisphere of the brain, to a little fishing village where there are no phones.

All the memories that used to linger, as mentioned in the second stanza, suddenly decided to stop lingering, which means they are forgotten and all the cable wires or anything that will trigger the thought or the recollection of the memories are cut, which is what the last line of the stanza suggests. III Long ago you kissed the names of the nine Muses goodbye and watched the quadratic equation pack its bag, and even now as you memorize the order of the planets, IV something else is slipping away, a state flower perhaps, the address of an uncle, the capital of Paraguay.

In the third and fourth paragraphs is where the person’s rich literature is manifested. Here, the poet becomes more technical and specific in citing the literatures that could have influenced him in writing his poem or those are just some of the many books Billy Collins came across during his leisure time for reading. In an article, when poet Stephen Dunn said, “He allows us to overhear, clearly, what he himself has discovered.

” (1) While the poet is busy contemplating with his stuff, he becomes unconscious of what is happening in the world surrounding him. When he mentioned the nine muses in the third stanza, the thought could have occurred to him, and by this he could have been referring to the nine Greek muses or the nine planets of the solar system that could have been discussed in one of his science and arithmetic classes. All these, and an uncle’s thought are slipping away.

V Whatever it is you are struggling to remember, it is not poised on the tip of your tongue, not even lurking in some obscure corner of your spleen It is not wise to tell that anything you would like to remember is poised in the tip of your tongue or lurks in your spleen because it can be simply put the thought is forgotten. This way works if you want to get away from telling something that should not be said just make sure you have the right intention on such circumstances. But this is definitely not a good practice.

Instead and saying such expression, it would have been better to be to accept the fact that you are aging and be honest to admit that you simply forgotten things which is just normal for an aging person. In this way, you are not fooling anybody and most especially, you are not fooling yourself. VI It has floated away down a dark mythological river whose name begins with an L as far as you can recall, well on your own way to oblivion where you will join those who have even forgotten how to swim and how to ride a bicycle. VII No wonder you rise in the middle of the night to look up the date of a famous battle in a book on war. No wonder the moon in the window seems to have drifted out of a love poem that you used to know by heart.

The forgotten thoughts now belong to oblivion where it is impossible to retrieve. But the person tries to fight his forgetfulness and so is his aging. He goes through the memories of the past that can ignite or bring back the thoughts to the present while there is still moon outside. The moon signifies the light that continues to light the search and the pursuit of regaining the memories of the past.

On the other hand, its gradual movement signifies that in quite a while it will last and soon there will be another day but this, no one is sure for the person is already old and could be dying and all that he wants to do before he faces that last moment in his life would be a remarkable milestone from the past with which the person is happy and still has a good memory that he will bring to his final destination. In my opinion, Billy Collins himself is the one speaking in the poem, sharing about his own experience through poems, which is very dear to him.

I cannot tell or be very certain, as only the author can answer himself. As for us, the audience, we have our own freedom of sharing our thoughts and expressing our own interpretation of the literature. Being forgetful is a mental condition that usually goes vis-a vis a persons’ aging stage. But for a person who has a vast imagination and has a lot of memories and experiences made along the way, being forgetful is probably one of the most dreadful diseases a person could have.

It is more than killing you physically. It is a kind of torture that kills you slowly where you will feel much of the pain. All the good and bad memories are being taken away from you and leave you nothing; at times it even steals your own identity from you. In the poem, though it is not directly stated, I think it is telling us to keep our minds healthy and live a healthy life away from vices or anything that can be disastrous to our mind and bodies in order not to be forgetful.

Also, it tells us to value the little things that we have. Do not let anything be taken for granted, appreciate and be contented with what you have while you are young and still able. Live your life to the fullest extent you can and seize every minute of it. Because we only have one life to live, so while it is still there for us to enjoy, do so, make the most out of it and when you get to the point of no return, you can say to yourself, “I have no regrets! ” References: 1. http://www. poets. org/poet. php/prmPID/278

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