Stallybrass makes an important note in one of his essays, Worn Worlds. He states that when you wear a deceased person’s clothes, their spirit is still in their clothing. Meaning you can feel their spirit and how the person felt when wearing those clothes. This statement holds true, even for me even though not in the same sense of a deceased person.
My piece of clothing from a “deceased” person is a white and red T-shirt that read POLSKA across the chest in red. This shirt means a lot to me because I have had it since I was a kid. This shirt was never passed on to me from someone who died, I bought this shirt in a store. I have had this shirt for several years now and cannot bring myself to throw it away because it has sentimental value to me. When I bought this shirt, I bought it a little too big for me and the shirt is elastic. So even to this day the shirt fits me, even if it is a little tight around the waist. I only wear this shirt when I am home because that is where most of my childhood was spent.
The reason I say this shirt is from a “deceased” person is because this shirt represents my childhood which I no longer have. I had to grow up and take on responsibilities like everyone else in the world at some point. The shirt symbolizes my childhood, carefree life, and my patriotic love for Poland. Whenever I wear this shirt, mainly for the days I am relaxing at home, I feel young again. For a couple minutes, my childhood presence takes over, and I feel at peace. All those memories of running around, playing soccer, and laughing out of pure joy floods my memory and I feel happy. The feeling isn’t forever thought. My mom would call me to do some chore, or I would remember that I have homework to do and then my memories will suppress themselves again. This shirt is my portal back to a simpler time, a better time, in my life so far.
I don’t ever thing I would throw away this piece of clothing. I think I may keep it and pass it down to my kids one day, so I may be reminded of myself every time I see them wearing it. This shirt brings me back to a simpler time, and I love it. Eventually reality sinks in again and my memories go back into hiding but I know that every time I wear that shirt, or I see my kids wearing that shirt, the spirit will come back out and be with me once more.