Our love is so far away

Our love is so far away

Our love is so far away now
it’s like looking on another galaxy,
And I feel sad it’s light years since we met;
Acres of space apart from it now,
Manifoldly distant,
Remotely, I note now
just the vacuum of regret.

22 April 2015

© Annie Copland




This is a poem about the regret and distance of the nostalgic looking back on a former time and a past (idealised) love. It is about memories and the power of the human memory. It is also about the immutable passage of time romping roughshod over our conflicting desire for alternative possible worlds. It could also be about old age.
These words consider, regretfully, how we think that something (say, a memory that filled us with particular pleasure) is going to stay large and clear in our minds forever. What was once a large burning ball that filled the whole of the room, for whatever reason drifts from us, then recedes…and recedes…till it becomes just a football, then an orange, then a marble, then a tiny speck, very fuzzy indeed; and we begin to realise we are so far removed from it now and are eyeing the thing from such a perspective that we have no concept of what that thing (space-time point, x,y,z,t) once really was; nor indeed what it really is now.

Technique: It is written very simply. Conveying thought – (similar to what Carol Ann Duffy says) – I don’t tend to use obscure written forms or complex language. Instead I like poetry to sound like sentences that one might actually say – but not just actual sentences, more like, ‘SentencesPLUS!’
Poems. They are the most condensed and best-expressed forms of our Thought. Rhyming of course, vaguely, using the techniques of repeated sound, designed to be read aloud, because I believe that is how things become committed to memory and therefore memorable.

It asks:

How long will we remember someone? Something? Will it stay fresh and alive forever? Are we capable of preserving a memory ‘suspended in formaldehyde’, or will it inevitably slowly start to disintegrate over time?
Philosophically, too, what are thoughts, reflections? Are they the same as actual, tangible things? If we are not near or readily approaching or experiencing a thing in the present, how can we be certain we are conjuring up in our minds the truth, especially when we are trying to recall an accurate image of the past? What are the pros and cons of our imagination?
What do we feel about things when we reach middle age? – We are now actively looking ‘both ways’. Behind ← and beyond →.
What is the purpose of memory? Why do we repeatedly think about things that have already happened to us?
How distant is space? Remember we are thinking of several dimensions here, four, not just three. And indeed, how insignificant are we in the reaches of time? ‘Your time is short here’ is axiomatic but that doesn’t mean you can’t have your say.

How it came to me:

I saw various things earlier in the day that subconsciously I must have stored in my mind. Earlier in the day I had idly read a poem about history. That made me think about ancient history, which in turn made me think about time. I met up with some people in the afternoon and I reflected on how old they (we) all were; ancient, insignificant; how old age is upon us already. We are halfway dead. Then I went for a walk in the evening and saw a beach and a town that I looked down on from a distance, and that made me think about space and distance; a sense of being removed. Finally just before I went to bed I looked out of the window and saw the moon and a star. Again this made me think of the distance of space, looking on such a small faraway thing and how removed I was from it.
As soon as I hit the pillow I thought it up in bed.


Space-time perspective dreams

This also reminds me of a dream I once had; which essentially addresses the same concepts of space, distance, time, matter and void – and considers what happens when things fly apart owing to lack of gravity: what is left in the space between? I am trying to theoretically place myself there and imagine what that feels like. Only a lack of energy, a slowing; distantness, and perhaps a sense of extreme isolation.
I wrote my dream down because at the time it seemed interesting and significant. It helps me to write dreams down (many and vivid) because they tap into the subconscious mind; our innermost fears and desires.

09 January 2014
“Last night I dreamt I was transported to the edge (and end) of the universe. I was being driven there by some mad scientist like Prof Stephen Hawking, or his younger, weller self. He knew things that the rest of us did not. There were vortices and spirals. We accelerated whizzing round and round and things began to distance. Space-time dimensions were stretched. Matter was different…more…far apart. Things became less and less interesting, till only rocks remained. I did not like it. Perhaps I should not have been stargazing as I walked home last night, though it was a clear evening for it.”

I hope you enjoy this and have enjoyed my silly reflections on the gooey plasma of time.


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