Sunday, June 15, 2014

A Father's Day Tribute—The Past Unwritten

by Edie Melson

His world—once painted in vibrant colors with wide brush strokes—now only grays, hazy and indistinct.
Memoriesremembrances, grown dim.
Life now, only a reflection of the black and white images he once captured.

Words, once a rushing river of abundance,
Now trickle through a small stream bed
Stumbling over rocks
Stuttering to a stop in stagnant pools of

A father and husband, once a perfect composition,
Now missing the parts that made him whole.
Awkwardly fit together,
A cruel caricature of who he once was.

Time, once a ribbon unbroken from past to present to future.
Now frayed and torn,
Beyond mending, but precious for the parts
That remain.

Experiences once shared, slowly fading, disappear into murky shadows,
A book being unwritten
Day by day.

Glimpses of the hero he is shines through the dim light in his eyes.
Moments of recognition,
Treasures of the past.

I wrote this as I tried to come to terms with the encroaching dementia of someone I love. Perhaps you've found yourself struggling with a similar situation.


  1. What a beautiful tribute, Edie. It brought tears to my eyes because I lost my Dad last year. Even though I think of him every day, Father's Day and his birthday next week, bring special memories.

  2. Eloquently written, Edie. I'm sure each moment of clarity you have with your dad is even more special now.

  3. That's so beautiful, Edie. My adopted mom died of Alzheimer's, and watching her once lively, creative mind grow dim, remembrances forgotten, was hard. But her lively sense of humor lasted until she forgot how to talk. But I don't think of her that way. I remember her as a wonderful teacher, an encourager, and one who loved to laugh.

  4. "A book being unwritten
    Day by day." Eloquent, poignant, painfully beautiful.

  5. So sad, so true. In the last few years of her life my grandmother lived in a world where she was (apparently) happier than the real world. She didn't remember me as who I was (to her), but a sort of sad tribute--she didn't know who I was, but she liked me anyway. Couldn't say it better, Lori--this was eloquent, poignant, and painfully beautiful.

  6. Thank you all for understanding, sharing and taking time to comment

  7. Very well put Edie. It brought tears to my eyes too. Your poem speaks the painful truth about dementia in a beautiful way.