I sent out a plea for help with a poem I started but couldn't get to sound right. My sister, Sara, did the most amazing job with it. It is a gentle reminder to the staff where our mom lives.
My parts have served me well for years
But now that is not so
Just when I seem to need them most
That's when they choose to go.
My eyes no longer see you;
It really seems a shame,
I'd love to stop and chat a bit
If you'd just say your name.
I know it seems redundant-
I should know who you are,
But all's a blur inside these eyes
I can't see near or far.
Then when you tell me who you are
Please speak up nice and clear,
For though I used to listen well
I now must strain to hear.
And if you see me oddly dressed
For morning or for night,
Don't scold or hold me up to scorn;
I tried to do it right.
The flowered blouse, the pajama top,
The shirt that's striped in blues;
My clothes all look the same to me,
So would you help me choose?
My mind, too, often lets me down
Though once it worked just fine.
I pass the rooms but can't recall
Just how to get to mine.
So if you see me wandering
Just take me by the hand
And help me back to 148
I'm sure you'll understand
That losing track of where I am
And where I meant to go
Is not a bit of fun for me;
It's really quite a blow.
I can't walk fast, or stand for long,
My arms don't work the best,
And though I love to exercise
I'll quickly stop to rest.
But what remains of what I was,
My strongest working part,
Is where I feel your love or scorn-
I feel it in my heart.
I laugh and cry just like I did
When I was twenty-five,
And just like you, I need some love
As long as I'm alive.
You cannot tell by looking
But I still dream and plan,
And inside all these failing parts
I do the best I can.