by Kristina Woodhill

Thank you for the words you wrote while you were still alive
Thank you for the times you shared not seen by my young eyes
Thank you for the thoughts penned from your seeking intellect
Thank you for allowing me to see you at your best

And as I hold your hand tonight and hear you mumble words
No meaning comes from our soft chats, no light shines from your world
Somehow the yolk within, that glowing strength that fed you well
Seeps from a subtle crack and leaves this crumbling fragile shell

Could I but choose the part of you I’d keep close by my side
Though to the end I’ll sit with you and from this pain not hide
I’d choose the words of your life lived, the joyful and the tough
Your written life I could reread and that would be enough


Author's Note: Our friends mother, such a bright light, faded away to Alzheimers. When they were sorting through her belongings after her death they found journals of her life, thoughts that are now so precious to them and to her grandchildren. There are many reasons to write and this is one of them.

Posted on 12/11/2006
Copyright © 2019 Kristina Woodhill

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Jennifer Ragan on 12/11/06 at 05:52 PM

This is very touching

Posted by Gregory O'Neill on 12/11/06 at 07:22 PM

Really wonderful write, Kristina. You are all so fortunate to have those journals and his poem is evidence of that. Well done. Thanks.

Posted by Steven Kenworthy on 12/12/06 at 05:09 AM

mystifying, dark with some dashes of silver lining. alzheimer's is wicked and awkward in its ways, but it is might powerful and impossible to ignore. we always want to keep people around like you say towards the end, but life wouldn't be nearly half as beautiful if we could choose what to keep or lose. the beauty of the cycle can feel so ugly sometimes, but you've captured very real emotion here kw. a gorgeous thought processing.

Posted by Peter Humphreys on 12/12/06 at 04:56 PM

This is a beautiful and moving tribute, Kristina. It is such a horrible condition that seemingly robs life from the living and hurts those near so very much. Thank you for these words.

Posted by Kyle Anne Kish on 12/13/06 at 04:42 PM

Kristina, the jist of this poem brought my own memories of my Dad flooding back in a way that made them even more precious. Thank you for that.

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 12/13/06 at 07:32 PM

Beautiful tribute Kris, that in combination with your Author's Note really hits home the impact of Alzheimer's, and the value of writing for those left behind after passing.

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 12/14/06 at 12:21 AM

An extremely touching piece. A very loving tribute to a person who had the forsight to write it down so it could not be lost in a confused mind. Wonderful write' tearful read.

Posted by Charles E Minshall on 12/14/06 at 02:11 AM

Sad but what a nice tribute Kris....Charlie

Posted by Scott Utley on 12/15/06 at 01:45 AM

My mother never wrote a thing, likewise my father, both passed on to Alzheimers - ahhhhhhhh - what away to go - I think - I said tO myself while all the world was sleeping, 'this kristina woodhill is some sort of new age genius' - I love words by a master-word-smith, especially if they are so liberally doused with raw truth to the bome as you quite naturally do, so effortlessly -- WHO ARE YOU? : )No! Really? wow i'm impressed with myself always except now - Bravo and I am sad for just this moment

Posted by Christel Crews on 12/15/06 at 08:34 PM

oh this is beautiful! and what an amazing reason to write! this is just breathtaking

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 12/16/06 at 02:25 PM

Congrats on hitting no. 1 Kristina. Well deserved!

Posted by Kathleen Wilson on 12/17/06 at 06:35 AM

The image of the yolk as the glowing source of strength, the subtle crack, and the fragile shell remains... this is the center of poetic strength in your poem, mirroring hers. Also the fact that what is left is her writing, like your writing-- this too is a strong correspondence. These strengths bring the poem beyond the emotional response, in form and substance.

Posted by Sarah Graves on 12/17/06 at 06:52 AM

You do her justice with your honesty, and gentleness within your words. A great tribute to a wonderful woman I'm sure. :)

Posted by Mara Meade on 12/18/06 at 03:07 AM

Beautiful tribute, Kristina, and I so appreciate the beauty in your own soul that brought this to us.

Posted by Kalikala Smith on 03/29/07 at 12:32 PM

beautiful. simply.

Posted by Don Matley on 09/09/07 at 12:32 PM

avery moving piece...it home for me as I discover more and more a side of my sister that her humility kept from me,despite the fact that I supported her work and was aware of some of it. You clearly bring out the eternal value of the written word. Imagine if Shakespeare's folios had never seen the light of day. I consistently enjoy and admire your writing and thought.

Posted by Stephan Anstey on 10/22/08 at 05:11 PM

There really is nothing good to say about Alzheimer's.

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