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A Poem: And Also, in the Process, Forgetting Ourselves 

How it is is confusing how the young woman already suffers
from what is not even remembered as dementia, how
it could be how young she is, yet

she suffers from dementia. She
slowly caresses the table as her fingers slide across
its smooth surface reflecting a rusted fan’s rotating blades

in this air-conditioned room, her flexed fingers
gliding over the table’s shiny exterior under which
there’s nothing. Someone says her name and

there’s nothing, no familiar response, no
understanding of her place in this world. Inside her mind,
there’s a disarming quiet. There’s a hush of absent connections;

There’s nothing anyone can do. How it is is confusing how
this young woman’s reflected in the mirror, seeing
her own reflection in the mirror, and also seeing

her husband who is no longer her husband holding onto her,
whispering things she will soon forget. She’ll
soon forget all of this. It’s hopeless for him to remember

that life they would’ve had, which now they’ll never have.
He strokes her hair, embraces her, whispers that he loves her,
but she doesn’t recognize either one of them.

Who she was is nothing like what she’s become,
and who they were is nothing like what they’ve become,
and no wishes can be made from what is forgotten.

Speaking of...

  • A poem by Jonathan Greenhause.


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