Against Forgetting ~
It might have been the car’s fault, she told me
this when she lost her way home.
Or possibly I gave her the wrong directions.
To the house we shared??
Perhaps the names of plants she once knew
like those of her four daughters
whom she would lose as well
shook loose with overuse.
Never mind, I reassured her, it’s all okay.
But it wasn’t.
It might have been bad luck, of course:
the kind that seems so much worse befalling
those we love. I knocked on all the woods
I saw, and looked for four-leaf clovers.
It didn’t help.
Nothing did, certainly not time.
Days soon became nameless, as faces lost
context. The names she thought she knew
so well faded into then. And even though
I was against all forgetting, my name
too slipped through the cracks within her.
Until all that remained were the cracks
almost smooth from finger tracing.
A writing that might yet make sense.
Except it never did.
And now, like a softly ticking bomb,
I am still. Against forgetting.