Death of a dialogue

Photo credit: https://unsplash.com/@travisessinger

Memories are a constant dialogue in our minds, reminding us of the years gone by in vivid colours, smells, sounds, fleeting touches… They are snapshots of our entire lives from birth until…

But what happens when memories begin to fade away, leaving white spaces where colour used to be? When silence echoes where sounds used to be? When we can talk with our memories no more? When the mind is emptied of its thoughts and its conversations with the past die…. stripping even the most brilliant, the most creative minds of the rich tapestry that they spend their lives weaving.

And what happens to those who love you when they see themselves die in your memories?

Death of a dialogue

The vacuous eyes, the empty stare,
The way the doctor said it’d be,
Her mind is shutting down,
She is losing her memory.

The memories in my head,
They don’t chatter anymore,
And when I try to remember,
I wonder what I’m looking for.

I push back a loose strand of her hair,
‘I am here, Ma! I say,
A fleeting flicker of recognition, and
The blank stare again. She just looks away.

I wonder who you are,
I wonder why you stare,
I wish you’d keep quiet, and
Please don’t touch my hair.

‘Tomorrow she’ll remember,
Don’t you worry, honey.’
But why can’t I believe,
What you are saying Daddy?

Someday, I hear voices from faraway,
Ma singing a lullaby, sitting next to my bed,
The baby gurgling happily,
When Daddy held her above his head.

‘Do you need something dear’?
Dad is trying his best.
I can see he is tired,
At his age, he too needs some rest.

The hands in my lap look so wizened,
And my bones feel frozen and cold,
I want something to keep me warm,
But I can’t think of the word for what keeps out the cold.

Do you remember Ma,
When I burned your favourite cake?
Do you remember how we laughed
And you told me I should never try to bake’?

That woman who holds my hand every day,
I think I know who she is,
We played together once, and shared secrets
Can you tell me her name, please?

Shall I play your favourite song,
The one you always loved to sing?
The one about flowers and birds,
When it was time for Spring?

Why do I feel so confused, so weak, so lost…
Why do you hold my hand?
Who are you? Do I know you?
And why do you keep calling me Ma?

Jyotsna Atre
April 05, 2021

This post is a part of the Blogchatter A2Z challenge