Friday, October 04, 2019

OctPoWriMo #4: Cages

What happens when words begin to slip away,
like threads of pewter, silver, or gold?
First nouns, then numbers. One day,
whole memories are simply gone.
Faces are next.
I’ll sit in my wheelchair, 
my hands restless over my lap quilt.
I don’t remember who made it for me.
I don’t remember who I am.

My grandmother had dementia. Just before she died, she spoke only in Swedish. My aunt was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease; she forgot that she loved to drink wine. 

Today’s prompt for OctPoWriMo me that the ‘cages’ or boundaries that limit us are only sometimes of our own making.

Comfort Quilt (Beth 2018)

My sister sent me a pattern for wheelchair-sized comfort quilts from Carolyn's Homesewn that features a pocket for those cold hands. I can't wait to make this one. A quilting friend told me that often quilts are made with extra pockets for Alzheimer patients with restless hands.

Tomorrow’s prompt: Doorway, open or closed? Why not join in?



  1. Love this, Beth! Glad you're writing along with us this year!

  2. This was very moving. Addressing one of the five fears all humans share: loss of autonomy. When I was young, I had an "aunt" with Alzheimer's. It was difficult to understand how someone I cared about didn't know me each time she came over. Thank you for poem.

  3. I felt how close this was to you before you explained. I love the idea of a wheelchair quilt with pockets.

  4. Touching poem, Beth. My beloved Oma had old age-related Alzheimer disease, but always succeeded in recognizing me, which was so important. What a wonderful and considerate idea to make quilts with pockets. I hope you share a photo of it once you’ve quilted that pattern.