Her skin is frail and crumpled now
with liver spots and wrinkles
on that once translucent brow.
Those swollen legs and puffy feet
belie those time-worn snapshots
of a figure trim and neat.
And cloudy eyes and thinning hair
and whiskered mole and deafness
don’t mean she doesn’t care.
For she remembers, like a song,
a time when she was blooming –
fragrant, gorgeous, joyful, strong.
Evening in Paris, squirrel coat
and high heels, silken stockings;
glass beads, a graceful throat.
But that was then. These days she’ll dress
for warmth and ease and comfort.
Her socks don’t tease, there’s no caress.
She once had power: Do that! Do this!
Clean teeth! Wash face! she’d order.
All softened with a kiss.
But now her journey’s end is near
the mother turns to child,
and childhood memories are most dear.
Her inner strength still tells her: fight!
But mind and body let her down –
we mourn for one, one once so bright.
We want her back, we want to share
our lives again, the way we did
when she was young enough to care.