Sunday, May 10, 2015

A Poem for Mothers' Day

Memory Lapse 
by Meriwether Falk

I laze in the hospital bed, regarding my guest

“I’m your mother,” she says, but I have no memory

I shake my bandaged head regretfully

The stranger ponders our predicament

Then she barks earnestly like a German Shepherd

When I stare at her, clueless

She shrieks like a peacock,

waving her arms over her head

in a confusing gesture that is supposed to mimic a plumage of feathers

She recites Hamlet’s soliloquies, dashing around the room in

theatrical rage and despair, holding an imaginary skull

And when that fails to jolt my memory

She hula dances

She runs to the car and comes back wearing a fez

Playing, “You Belong to Me,” on the ukulele

She sits on the edge of the bed

To no avail, she clutches an imaginary steering wheel and utters

every fathomable curse and insult at phantom drivers

She looks at me hopefully

Still. Nothing. No glimmer of recollection

She pulls a used tissue from her jacket’s front pocket

And blows her nose into the inexhaustible hankie

sounding like a fog horn

I hate it when she does that.

Why can’t she blow her nose quietly?

Oh yeah, I remember this woman


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