I cannot sleep
for thinking of you
in the airport
waiting for me
like old times.
You wanted to see me
again and again
as if there were still
something between us
something you couldn’t
quite remember but you
knew it was significant.
I cannot sleep after seeing
yet another news report
of a man with Alzheimer’s
missing for more than a week
trying to go home to where
he used to live in Illinois.
He’s been in the news every
day, his family more frantic.
And news of a crash on I-95,
someone going north in
southbound lanes, one dead, 21,
another hospitalized, 29, but the
driver who crossed the median
walked away. I know you would not
want this, any more than you could
stand to see the apartment buildings
burning in London or Honolulu, any
more than you would want our own
oven burning from the plastic-handled
knife misplaced there before you left.
I want to keep you with me, stay with
you, not in any cloying way, but you
have decided I will not be your nurse.
You will come and eat breakfast with me,
go to dinner, galleries and museums. But
there will be no more tucking in at night,
no watching over you. Until you are stopped
cold by the brick wall, by gator or grizzly,
you will carry on, alone in the wilderness.