Turquoise Blouse

One day a few years ago my mother took out of her cedar chest the turquoise blouse  she bought for me on that trip to Bolivia, a miniature of the native women’s outfits. When she unfolded the little garment and gave it to me, the living memory of wearing the garment collided shockingly with the fact that it was so tiny, with arms less than a foot long, with a tiny bodice for a small cricket cage of a ribcage that was no longer mine, and the shock was that my vivid memory included what it felt like to be inside that brocade shirt but not the fact that inside it I had been so diminutive, had been something utterly other than my adult self who remembered.  The continuity of memory did not measure the abyss between a toddler’s body and a woman’s.

When I recovered the blouse, I lost the memory, for the two were irreconcilable.  (Solnit, 2006, p. 37)

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