Monday, October 03, 2005

Alzheimer's Anthology

I'm happy to have had two poems from my Alzheimer's series accepted for an anthology on this theme, to be edited by Holly Hughes. Some people report being rendered speechless by having a relative diagnosed. For some reason, it's had the opposite effect on me to watch my father progress through this disease. He loses functionality in bits and pieces, like the items he misplaces right under his nose, then after a frantic search looks at and can't recall what they're for. Oddly he's increasingly contented. Maybe he's forgetting how to be an angry, anxious person. Maybe he's enjoying the long blanks where troubled thoughts used to be. I especially relish the phone calls where he says my name as if savoring the fact that he still remembers it, then asks me where I live. Maybe I'll write so many of these poems I'll eventually have a book of them. I hope the cure comes first, though it won't be in time for him.

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