Remember When?

I think in memories, 

and I think in possibilities. 

I think in “remember when” 

and “just think, what if,”

 

Like remember

your first day at TGS or

the first time that video

convinced you there might be more

 

but also made you think

This school’s a scam 

‘cuz it’s way too good to be true - 

but what if I just don’t give a damn?’

 

Remember the first time 

Jawed told you that

his toys were tanks

growing up

 

and Anat taught you to the difference

between Fatah and Hamas, 

 

and you had to blink twice

before it sank in

that you didn’t know 

much of anything? 

 

And you started to imagine

what if we laid down 

our arms and journalists 

were at a loss ‘cuz 

 

nowhere in the world 

was there anyone

whose life was ended too early

by someone else’s gun. 

 

Or remember when

every night at L’ecole,

Donny would wink at Maya, 

flip a page in his pad, 

take a deep breath and 

begin, “Hoy tenemos!” 

 

And remember when you were 

staring down into the Devil’s Throat and 

you wondered what was behind the mist? 

 

Like what if all the fairies and 

goblins and unicorns were

hiding right there and

sometimes they leaked out

 

in the form of rainbows or that kind

of inexplicable magic - 

‘cuz you know what they 

say ‘bout how the best things 

are always just beneath your nose. 

 

And remember when Gawa said

if you put together

Psy and Cho, 

you get a psycho? 

 

And what if they named

a trail after you,

do the math - 

it’d be named “Psychopath?”

 

Remember getting cocky

with the spicy sauce

in Bhutan, igniting

a fire, hot on your tongue?

 

And wondering if

it was possible

to die from the burn? 

 

Remember watching

Steve Kruger talk with

his hands and his eyes 

so animatedly

 

you started to wonder

what if this guy combusts

and all that’s left are

Broadway tickets and confetti?

 

And remember when

Nemo blew flurries of white

and you stuck your head out

the window only to be greeted with bite? 

 

What if eight years from now,

Martino and Stephanie 

have three baby Nicks 

running around,  

 

What if that sci-fi movie

wasn’t a lie

and right now, we 

aren’t actually alive

 

What if,

 

what if every color in the world

was turned upside down 

so the sky was pink and smiles 

were either blue or brown?

 

Someone once told me, 

“You can only ever connect the dots

looking backwards, never forwards.”

So when I say now,

 

what if you grow up to be

leaders and lifelong learners,

what if you say, I choose ethics over aesthetics,

and you say I choose peace over war,

and we all say, we know what’s right 

for the world cuz we learned it here,

 

I know that then 

in five, ten, fifty years, 

 

I’ll send you a message,

in scribbly blue pen, 

two words full of tears,

that reads 

 

“Remember when?”