A Shot in the Dark

Modern correspondence

My email account was disabled 
a few months ago. 
I ran out of storage and never bothered
to make room for more, despite 
my wanting to. 
There are a lot of things I want to do
that I never actually do. 

I wonder what kinds of things I’ve been missing
what words that will never 
reach me. 
I’m sure most of them are spam 
but there was always the occasional email 
which kept things interesting. 
A reason to check the account at all 
beyond using it to subscribe to stores for the reward 
of 10% off my next order. 

I hope that these senders aren’t insulted 
by my lack of reply.
I hope that they understand that
I, too 
sometimes feel like those unreceived emails
intending to go somewhere 
but not reaching it 
stuck in a middle ground 
where existence is uncertain
like a Schrodinger’s Box 
of communication.

The sun in the summer felt warmer
and the snow in the winter was the most 
beautiful thing I’d ever seen. 
I was never hot or cold but always 
Just Right. 
Construction paper was my medium of choice
and I built the tallest cities 
out of nothing. 
My dogs could live forever 
if I just believed hard enough. 

I miss waking up to the sound of my mom frying potatoes. 

The only internet I used was to play Webkinz 
and this was all I needed. 
To have pizza was to dine like royalty 
and money issues mattered 
but not to me. 
I was alone a lot 
but not in the way I am now.
I could read and read and read 
and there was always time to read more. 
My imagination spanned the globe but is now reduced 
to the size of a 
Washed up

They say we eat a credit card’s worth of plastic a year
from the land to the sea and back again. 
I think there’s an equal part of me 
lost to the water.
An eye for an eye 
pieces of me drowned in rivers I’ve never seen
the runoff of a sedentary life. 

I’ve always lived near water
always lived specifically on a peninsula. 
Nearly surrounded but not quite
always aware of the confines 
within which I exist. 
Everything is arbitrary until it isn’t 
and even though I want to believe 
I can do anything 
at any moment 
there’s water all around me and sometimes I feel like I’m drowning
even though I know how to swim. 

Everyone wants a coastal home 
but that coast will recede to nothing 
and I will be far away 
with nothing but land and opportunity in every direction.

The current is beyond my control and so is my life.
The commodity of memory

I look around at the objects surrounding me 
the possessions of mine which are now inextricably 
tied to someone else. 
I cannot look at a mug without thinking 
of how I was with him when I bought it 
a rock without recalling 
the beach I found it on during our last vacation.

Things are just things until they are not 
until they carry the weight of memories
that can make it hard to move. 
Physical manifestations of the intangible 
produced by the tangible. 
An exhausting cycle 
of commodity and sentiment.

The value I place in these things 
is a result only of the value 
of the relationship they represent. 
But when the relationship changes 
why do these objects still mean so much? 
A longing for what was 
or perhaps what still is. 
What does it mean when you’re not sure?

Am I in too deep or just still learning how to swim?


Photography Credit: DH

Senna Catenacci is a recent environmental science graduate from Michigan currently living in San Francisco, California. Her work is not featured anywhere (partly) because she has never submitted anywhere.