Breadcrumb #472


My mother was at her neurologist
being tested for dementia
and Alzheimer’s.

This is a poem in broken fragments.

My mother keeps leaving Styrofoam cups
of water lying around the house. Everywhere
you can find these white truncated cones
of tiny oceans waiting for her lips.

At the neurologist, they asked her
to draw a clock. She drew a cross.
Yes mother, we are all crucified
by time. You are a poet in picture,
you are a poet in rhyme. You were
my first clock.

Now you tell time
I am ready to go.

You don’t.

But I try to find you anyway.
You have left a map. A trail
of breadcrumbs shaped like
Styrofoam cups. All over.

“Make sure they don’t stop the Lorazepam,”
my mother says to the neurologist.

Lorazepam is used for the treatment of anxiety
but she gets that from her psychiatrist
not her neurologist. It also causes memory loss
and impairs judgment and coordination.

An estuary is
where a river’s current
meets the sea’s tide.

It connects the river to the sea.

The neurologist asked her,
“What’s today’s date?”

She says, “November 23rd, 1948.”

That is my mother’s birthday.

No estuary here.

This is a poem in broken fragments.

Her right hand shakes
more than her left
to keep her body

She remembers how to spell her name
but has trouble writing it down.

It’s that damned clock again.

My mother reminds the neurologist
of the Lorazepam again. She can’t wait
to bring that tiny ocean to her lips

where the river’s current
meets the seas’ tide.

That is where she wants to be now
amongst all this Styrofoam
floating down the river
into a sea of everything

but her.

• • •

Breadcrumb #399


A souvenir
in a gift shop
at the doors of reality

This is what I would like
my life
to look like
when it’s done:

A plate, with a quote from my mom,
and another one with a quote from my dad,
facing each other

A postcard,
with a picture of an elephant sitting at a pond,
quietly feeding the ducks

A miniature house,
with a real tree
and a dusty light bulb on the porch

A snow globe,
of skyscrapers and
plastic flakes
in the shape of letters

A keychain,
that is also
a key
to something unknown.

one of those bottles
filled with layers
of colored sand

Colors of all the places
and people
I knew and loved
the wrong or the right way

layers of the years
spent as some one
or another one

pigments for all the images
I saw and made
salt for the dried tears
and fragments of the broken vase
I am

and at the bottom
like a foundation
some thick golden sand
from la p’tite plage
where I spent my hours
chasing seashells
in Brittany.

and in the mix
of all this
diffused and
a drop of mud
for all the pain
of my family.

Sealed with beeswax
as a tribute
to nature
standing still
on a shelf
like a mountain
or a tree

Then somebody would come
and grab me
and drop me
maybe by accident
And the wind would blow
And I would disperse my self
in textured particles
becoming dust
in heaven.

• • •