My mother so stubborn she will not leave her home and insists on taking care of my 93-year-old father by herself.
Yesterday he fell on the floor and could not get up. His mind eaten by dementia he does not even understand the mechanics of how to help raise his frail body from the floor once he is there.
This hero of World War II. This hero of my life. This damn good man.
On the floor. Crumpled. For 20 minutes until my mother can summon a neighbor to help.
His life ticking away in a crumple on the floor. His blue eyes bewildered.
My mother too scared to leave the home she has known for 65 years.
Too scared to do what is best for both of them.
A good woman scared of the slipping away of what she loves.
Today and always this is what is important.
I think I grow tensions
in a wood where
Each wound is perfect,
encloses itself in a tiny
Pain is a flower like that one,
like this one,
like that one,
like this one.
My mother calls me in a panic.
My father did not eat his dinner, refused to take his pills and went to bed in his clothes and not his pajamas.
She thinks that if he eats three meals a day and not two, takes 20 pills a day instead of 17, and goes to bed in what society deems proper sleepwear; he may live forever.
He is 93, can barely walk a few steps, and has a fatal disease.
There is no fine line between optimism and denial.