He sits shriveled in a giant chair
And looks like a child once again.

We spoke about his late wife,
Old faces where new ones
Remain forever unknown,
And football,
His second love.

We spoke for hours
And though his eyes
Did not see me,
His mind,
Did not know me...
His heart,
Still loved me.

I remember the day I knew
He was trapped inside his mind,
He greeted me at the door,
Shook my hand like a stranger
And embraced me like family,
Uncertain which I was.

My mother is still a baby,
My uncle is three,
Yet I exist somewhere,
A child in a blue poncho
That stole his heart,
Many years ago.

His eyes are shut now,
A low snore comes from his mouth
As his head drops forward onto his chest
Showering him in his own saliva.

His hand begins to shake
As I gently prise his fingers from mine.
And as I am turning to leave
A lonely tear slips from his eye
And parades down a wizned cheek,
Unsure of its reason for being.

He is still asleep
But his subconscious listens.
'I love you' seems lost
In the shallow yellow
Of this old room,
But it is heard.
A finger twitch response.

My heart is breaking
With each parting footstep,
For the man who was, is,
And never will be again
In this world.

And all I can think of
As the door of his prison
Clangs shut behind me is:

I hate the smell of hospitals.

The End

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