Tag Archives: loss of memory

Vagaries

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Vagaries

My mind is turning derelict. It often wanders on.
While I am still in need of it, I discover that it’s gone.
My thought processes aren’t uniform. They come and go at random.
Will and concentration no longer come in tandem.
It never ceases fascinating me that what was once
a certified ace student has turned into a dunce.
I know it is the fault of age and yet I often ponder
about this vagary of mind that sends it over yonder
when I have need of it at home. I find it most distressing
when common words are wanted, that my mind now leaves me guessing.


The prompt words today were fault, uniform, fascinate and derelict.Here are links:
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/rdp-tuesday-fault/
https://fivedotoh.com/2019/02/26/fowc-with-fandango-uniform/
https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/your-daily-word-prompt-Fascinate-february-26-2019/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/derelict/

When My Sister Plays the Piano

 

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This is  a poem written when I visited my sister in the first stages of memory loss. it is a bittersweet memory that I shared with only a few of you five years ago when I first started my blog but which very few people read, judging from the number of views and “likes.” This memory, as most are, is bittersweet.

When My Sister Plays the Piano

The first notes, beautiful and true, float like a memory up the stairs.
In the week I’ve been here in her house with her, she has not played the piano
and so I thought her music was gone like her memory of what day it is
or whether I am her sister, her daughter or an unknown visitor.

Yet on this morning after her 76th birthday celebration,
music slips like magic from the keys: song after song
from “Fur Elise” to a sweet ballad I don’t know the name of—
sure and correct at first,
then with a heartfelt emotion we had both forgotten.

“Midnight Concerto,”
“Sunrise, Sunset”—
song after song
expressed
in an unfaltering language—
some synchronicity of mind and hand
her brain has opened the door to.

While I listen, time stands still for me
as it has for her so often in the past few years
as yesterday and today shuffle together to
crowd out all consideration of future fears.

For ten minutes or more, she segues
from melody to melody
with no wrong note.
Then “Deep Velvet,”
a song she has played from memory
so many times,
dies after twenty-four notes.
Like a gift held out and snatched away,
I yearn for it, pray she’ll remember.

After an uncharted caesura, her music streams out again,
sweet and sure, for a staff or two—
the sheet music giving her a guide her brain so often can’t.
But after a longer pause, I know it is lost
like the thread of so many conversations.
A hiccup of memory, folding itself away.

“Come And Worship” chimes out
like the tolling of a bell.
The wisp of the old hymn, two phrases only—
before it, too, fades.

That sudden muffled sound.
Is it a songbook displaced from its stand as she searches for another;
or the lid of the piano, quietly closing on yet another partial memory?

 

The Ragtag prompt today was memories.