Some of my Mother is Missing

Lost slippers and kittens,

Long ago days on a windy beach,

The china owl you gave her,

All are out of reach.

The smile you remember is missing,

A fading smear on her lips;

The touch of the hand you are holding

Is a mere brush of her fingertips.

The photographs that you show her

Of the childhood you remember,

The drawing from the refrigerator:

They are only embers

Smothered by dementia.

 

© Kim M. Russell, 2016

collage-29

My response to Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Writing Prompt #177 “Collage 29”

Instead of a quote this time we have a short essay by Emma age 6 which reads “Love is when you’re missing some of your teeth but you’re not afraid to smile because you know your friends will still love you even though some of you is missing.”

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13 thoughts on “Some of my Mother is Missing

  1. This piece really tears at the heart, it reminds me of my grandmother how close we were, she was my childhood, my only chance for one, and then she started to slip away bit by bit though in her case forgetting years of traumatic memories brought her peace. That title is genius but absolutely gut-wrenching.

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    1. Thank you. It’s so hard watching the ones you love disappear. I can’t visit Mum as often as I’d like to as it’s a six and a half hour round trip, so every time I see her she’s slipped a bit further away. She has no speech now and is permanently in a wheelchair. I get the feeling she’s had enough.

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      1. I am so sorry to hear that Kim. I was several hours from my grandmother as well and after I got pregnant I didn’t visit very often which is something I regret even if it couldn’t have been helped. She was losing her hearing and it was very hard to communicate. She died 2 days before I gave birth and I was unable to attend the funeral. I wish I’d told her how important she was to me. I mean I told her I loved her all the time but I just wish I’d had that chance for a real heart to heart before she died (she died after an appendicits surgery she just couldn’t wake up from the anesthetic it was very unexpected). It might have been impossible anyway but I think it is important. Best luck to you and your family Kim.

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      2. It’s so difficult not to feel guilty. But if they could speak to us they’d probably tell us that there is nothing we can do and they are in the best hands for care and medical attention. And we would still feel guilty. Thank you for the kind wishes.

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