TOAST: TERTIARY OLD AGE SENIOR TALES
Brain Pan Building Plan
“We who are old, old and gay, O so old!
thousands of years, thousands of years,
If all were told.”
—William Butler Yeats, 1893
We who are old, old and stumbling
millions of synapses, millions of synapses
month after month
There are some new ones coming around
along the restless hours and sleepless nights
with a little help from those we love
we want more and more of course
is it getting better, it is getting better
tell us so, we don’t know
amygdala, cerebrum, cerebellum
can hardly tell them apart
our blood runs cold.
Answering the Easy Question is Hard
“Only remembering the method of remembering,
Remembering only in another way.”
To answer the easy question gets harder
Yes, he’s at home. This is he.
Not sure what he’s doing today. Oh me?
Probably out stargazing or writing a poem
Who is asking? What is your name?
I don’t remember how I know you.
It is tasking my brain. Memory loss to blame.
My hearing is good. My knees make do.
These days I’m not too sure for how long.
Can’t remember why I came in the room.
How did I use to get these things done?
Forgetting easily falling into dementia doom.
What is hot inside but covered with snow
used to be helpful but now starting to go?
Expired Meds Bad for Heads
Cross Wired Brains Cause Strains
“They’re looking for you” – said hearer to horror
As he left them there…”
—W.H. Auden, 1931
“Oh what am I doing?” I said to myself
Why did I come in here? What do I need?
As my eyes move along the bathroom shelf
now back in the kitchen do I have to return?
Can’t you even imagine why you went in?
It is getting dark and the overhead light is out
the medicine cabinet is a good place to begin
my patience with myself is wearing quite thin.
“Oh what is it I needed?” I can’t remember
What did it look like? What was its color?
My medicine expired last year in December
since then my memory gets duller and duller.
Think I’ll go outside and get some fresh air
Can’t find it? Don’t need it. What do I care?
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Special to the Saipan Tribune
Joey aka Pepe Batbon is a retired educator who taught in the CNMI, NOLA, and LVNV. He is a sonnet practitioner who enjoys stargazing.