The Photo Album
The airy room is well lit, warm and welcoming,
facing south across a shallow valley
where the land slopes away,
gently downwards and away.
Heat from a summer’s afternoon relaxes,
gently loosening towards the start of evening.
“May I sit here?” I ask the neatly turned-out gent
sitting in an armchair, looking south.
He smiles in embarrassed fashion as he nods.
After a short while I remark about the view.
Conversation, slow and halting begins.
He points to the photo album on my knee, “what’s that?”.
Offering to share my hoard of photos, page on page
he remarks that he recognises some of the scenes.
I ask what he remembers, what he recalls,
who he knew in times so distant, yet so close to mind.
Photo after photo, page after page.
“My son used to take photos, maybe you could meet?”.
Between the images, distant, yet so clear, words,
poems, recollections, incidents, family celebrations.
He recalls such times, longingly, youthfully
unshadowing his former vigour, his joy, his love of life.
Courtship, marriage, family, holidays, and friends.
A life held, treasured between those bound pages.
“Maybe we can talk tomorrow, may I come?”
He smiles and nods with enthusiasm.
I rise and shake his hand, “tomorrow then”.
Turning to leave the room I smile.
“See you tomorrow dad” quietly said with love and sadness.
27 March 2021. 11:30 a.m. -12:19
Fine, dry, overcast. 98% Moon, waxing.
Visiting dad living with dementia.