Alsheimer’s Morning


Alsheimer’s Morning

My mother had been told she was too young

To read the same book every day,

But there it was in her lap again.

Looking up, she smiled.

Was I someone she ought to know?

The doctor? The minister? A distant relative?

“Wayne’s gone fishing with his Dad,” she said.

“They like to catch ’em,

But they don’t like to clean ’em.”

There! Did she remember me --

Just for an instant?

No, I decided. No.

To her I was still a boy,

And Dad was still alive.

Back home in bed that night

I said I wanted to become like Mom --

And let the past and future go.

It was a cruel thing to say, and what’s her name was offended.

Now I sit here folding napkins

And watch the sunset yellowing the sky.

Mother is gone now.

I’m not sure who told me,

Probably Barbara, but it doesn’t really matter any more.

I’m happiest when no one comes to call.

April 28, 2004

Revised February 15, 18, 23, and March  11, 2005

Austin, Texas