A Woman's Voice

Alzheimers: Remembering Those Who Can’t ~ January 29, 2011 by Charles Betts


When I get old and lose my mind,

Familiar things are hard to find,

So much it seems is locked behind

Some wall. Will you please be kind?

If you and I should chance to meet

Some day upon some road or street,

And I should fail to smile or greet

You, as I did when life was sweet.

It’s not that I don’t still love you,

But all of me that you once knew

Is gone. Forgotten, like chaff that blew

Upon some wind. See each day is new.

There’s just no way I can recall

Or bring to mind your name at all.

You see me stumble and I fall,

And lay there in a fetal ball.

My family wonders what is wrong.

Where is the happy soul, the song?

They used to hear as they walked along

Their hand in mine where it belonged.

They simply cannot understand

What happened to the merry band

That used to walk. Enjoy the sand

Upon the beach. Hand in hand.

Their face I no longer recognize

As I peer out with glazened eyes,

On what was once my greatest prize.

My wife, my children. I hear their cries.

There was a time my mind was keen.

I could remember where I had been,

What I had heard, what I had seen.

Now all is trapped in a glossy sheen.

You are bending now upon your knees

And as my hands you gently squeeze

Can you not hear my silent pleas?

Take me home before someone sees

When I am there I’ll be alright.

Thanks for helping in my plight.

My family is there. I see their fright.

When will I escape this blackened night?

There is no escape. Only darkness ahead.

Each day I fear to rise from my bed.

Last night I heard what was said

By loved ones, he’s better off dead.

Forced to rely on someone’s care

Like a child. Lead about everywhere

My mind is gone, beyond repair

The end of life. Such deep despair

This poem was written to help some understand

what I thought Alzheimer patients might be going through.

Last verse added on March 1st 2010 by Charles Betts

Charles, I would like to thank you  for sharing your talent and creative poem writing ability with all of us. Charles has sent me four poems and this is the second one I received. The first one, “The Refuge” was posted January 22nd. 


7 Responses to 'Alzheimers: Remembering Those Who Can’t ~ January 29, 2011 by Charles Betts'

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  1. Peter Black said,

    Great poem Dolores.
    Mr. Betts has put this together so well. I found it both sensitive and sensitizing. I trust it will help all who read or hear it recited to be more understanding of those who suffer from memory loss and various forms of dementia.

    • Thanks Peter…I was very honored to receive this poem from Charles. I have two more to post and they are very enlightning as well. I think you’re right. Charles’ poems are both sensitive and sensitizing. I’m sure there are many people who can relate to the difficulties that come with the various degrees of memory loss and dementia. I always appreciate your comments and support. Blessings to you, May and your family.

  2. nel said,

    The blog is very good!

  3. This poem could very well apply to others as well 🙂 I think it’s great.

    • How true Barb…I notice my memory isn’t what it used to be. Thanks so much for your continued support and thoughtful comments.

  4. hope_rising said,

    this is quite beautiful. I had a dear friend start to slip down this path. She was a beautiful woman, a retired military nurse … great mom .. she lived an amazing life .. heroic even … and she struggled to recall so much of it … but even in her last year .. I was thrilled because I visited her on vetrans day, and when I told her it was vetrans day .. she told me she was a vetran and grinned from ear to ear! what a treat that was to see that twinkle.

    alzheimers is such a cruel disease .. I hope there is a cure or treatment soon ..

    beautiful poem

    • Thanks Hope…I knew a poet like yourself could appreciate Charles’ poem but it has touched you at an even deeper level. I’m so sad to hear about your dear friend who slipped down the path that Charles describes. Alzheimers is a very cruel disease and I hope they find a cure for it one day soon or at least some effective way to treat such a sad condition that affects not only the patient but their loved ones too.

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