This is the week
Mom can no longer recall
her own last name
our last name

This is the week
Mom can no longer answer
verbal questions such as
“Do you want a blanket?”
without accompanying gestures and visuals

This is the week
Mom can no longer follow
ven the simplest verbal instruction
“Take your sunglasses from him.”
in any environment outside her own home

This is the week
Mom no longer remembers
the words to classic holiday music–
music she’s been singing since childhood–
one of my own deeply loved signs that she is still here…




Sit on the floor in a sunbeam.

Gather selves. Yours. Hers. Ours.

Insist on four long, deep breaths before you continue.




This is the week
Mom is here with us
aughing at slap-stick comedy
Fraiser’s “Ham Radio” episode on Netflix
with me.

This is the week
We belted out hummed Christmas tunes and invented our own words.
We still know all the melodies, if not all the words.

This is the week
Mom and I remembered the simple joy
f window shopping holiday catalogs together.

This is the week
we created collective art:
olored pencil on paper.

This is the week
Mom played with Eva the dog
eld all the cats purring on her lap
beamed whenever baby Joss was mentioned

This is the week
Mom took my fingers in hers
warming both our hands w
our fingers were cold…


I love what grief does:

how she widens the
spaces within
individual fear
can pour out

how she just keeps leaving
more room
for love