HPN

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Poetry of Issue #8        Page 29

Shooting Star

We are all starlight, fragments of a great eruption.”
Joan Colby, from Contemplating the Owl
in Bony Old Folks


Splinters of the mother-in-law I knew
manage an occasional cognitive jail break,
shine through the miasmic haze
of progressive dementia.

Family names are erased,
part of ongoing mental implosion
that consumes memories, her ability
to participate in conversations.

Some days she refuses to dress, get out of bed.
Other times she’ll come to our house for dinner
but has forgotten how to use a fork and knife,
eats salad and quiche with her fingers.

“You’re a good daughter,” she tells me
after a treat of wild blackberry ice cream.
All I can offer is a hug and sandwich bag packed
with white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.

  Jennifer Lagier