Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Where Time Has Gone, You Dwell (Poem)

Where Time Has Gone, You Dwell

Yesterday we read old poems.
You swore they could not be

yours. Today you try again
to write. Your good hand has muscle

memory, makes a solid motion
to hold your favored fountain pen,

capped when it goes to your mouth,
as it always does when you're lost

in thought. We wait together
for first words to come. I put on

music to fill the room. It's just a moment
then when your eyes tell me where time

has gone, you dwell. I'm patient for you
to come back, knowing you'll tell me

tomorrow you don't remember missing
the appointment we had. We'll read a few

more older poems before you rise
from your straight-back writing chair, draw

open the blind, and laugh at how much
my own voice sounds just like yours.

© 2011 Maureen E. Doallas
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I offer this poem for the One Shot Wednesday event at One Stop Poetry, which each week invites poets to share, read, and comment on each other's work. Be sure to check the site late Tuesday afternoon and every Wednesday for the many contributors' poems.

22 comments:

Louise Gallagher said...

This is heartbreakingly beautiful.

Kelly Sauer said...

oh M, what a lovely telling...

Poetic Soul said...

Wow, intense and perfectly written

Hannah Stephenson said...

Yup, I know just what you mean about old poems not seeming like ours. It's really disorienting, isn't it? Sometimes I think, "Didn't I write this poem already?" when I'm working on a new one---weird deja vu!

Annie Boreson said...

Absolutely beautiful!

S. Etole said...

This is simply perfect in its telling ... and revealing.

jen revved said...

A beautiful poem-- tender and direct, all of a piece. I remember those fountain pens...sometimes I miss them! xxxj

Brian Miller said...

ha jenne i miss them too...this is wonderfully spun maureen and thank you for the support you have always given one stop...

nance marie said...

the parting of the ways
and the ways of parting

Elizabeth Young said...

I love the familiarity, the patience, the intimacy of this poem. I don't find it sad but special and protected.

Semaphore said...

This poem made me smile. Thank you, Maureen.

wolfsrosebud said...

Artfully done...

Ruth said...

Oh Maureen, there is so much bittersweet pleasure in this poem. How beautifully you've coupled these moments together with your loved one. My mom had Alzheimer's, and your simple lines about patience, and what will be recalled next day, even the music filling the room, are reminiscent for me. You've shown in one task—writing—the ache of aging and loss, of relationship, of doing something together, so simple, but not when you can't reach the words in your mind any more. I'm awfully moved. Thank you.

Mark Kerstetter said...

This also makes me think about the moment when a new poem first stirs that's timeless, in a way. It's a bit like amnesia, disorienting, and it seems weird that one has ever written a poem, then it begins to gel quickly and one gets one's voice back.

Joanne said...

Maureen, how did you know? What a wonderful story of what my husband and I have actually done (minus the fountain pen, plus a computer)? This is wondrous. Brings a tear of joy. Many thanks!

Ancient117331 said...

Told with heart and care...

Well done
Chris

ayala said...

Beautiful and moving.

Linda said...

This is so lovely Maureen. Thoughts of my aging parents swirled around the words.

violet said...

Maureen, so true and tender. I love this bit:

"as it always does when you're lost

in thought. We wait together"

The enjambment of that 'lost' sums up the entire poem for me.

Connie@raise your eyes said...

Though I'm sure there are moments of tears, what I feel here is love, acceptance and humor...beautifully done.

Shashi said...

Ahh!!! the ending was so perfect... I enjoyed reading this one.. liked it so much...

Shashi
ॐ नमः शिवाय
Om Namah Shivaya
http://shadowdancingwithmind.blogspot.com/2011/07/whispers-cuckoos-song-and-smell-of-love.html

Patricia said...

so tender... I know just what you are experiencing. And even if I didn't, you have written of it so beautifully, poignantly. How blessed you both are to have each other and walk this sacred ground together. Thanking God for muscle memory, music, similar voices and laughter. Some days, it's all we have... and we rejoice to give thanks in it.