She lays confused, lonely, cold
in a world where warmth was never
her strongest point. But she waits

unknowingly for the synapse to fire
a brief link to past thoughts;
sparks of memory to catch and ignite

the life she has lived. It gives
her as sense of self that lasts
sometimes for the blink of her eye.

She cries at the futility.
Tears, the utility of every broken heart
start to stream, teeming within red and tired eyes,

a life as seen through her vision
sits in contrast to her existence.
Days numbered and passing unnoticed.

She sees her young neice as an old friend
from a neighborhood that had died years ago.
A photo of the girl’s father, her brother,

sparks a smile with the recognition.
Then her condition takes control and
her stroll down memory lane ends.

Each day starts and ends in darkness.
Every moment in between holds
a murkiness of its own. Aunt Jane lingers.

Fingers curled and fisted, clutching
prayer beads, or maybe the last moments of life.
Her memory fades and she does not remember.

Prelude to:

“She Does Not Remember” by Anna Swirszczynska


2 thoughts on “A SPARK OF MEMORY

  1. I love how you wrote this as a prelude to Anna Swirszczynska's piece. Poor Aunt Jane. I believe you've written about her before. I think dememtia is every bit as hard on the loved ones as it is on the patient. Hoping there will be a cure (or prevention, better yet) sooner than later.

  2. Janice is the "girl" and her father is Jane's brother. He's in hospital with blood infections and lingers in his own demented hell. Janice has been real good taking care of Jane, but between the two of them, she's beginning to break down herself.

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