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Leaf picking (Art by: Sydney Conteh)

I walk through your neuron pathways.

Skipping past myelin sheath rocks.

And looking at grey matter trees.

They were once so green.

But now they are bare.

Branches with no leaves.

Some leaves carry memories.

The first I love you.

That reverberated in the air.

That was the best song I have ever heard.

The memory of the first time we danced.

Hands intertwined like vines on a tree.

Eyes locked onto each other.

Looking at forever.

But now they lay on the floor.

Your shaking hands cannot pick them up.

I know you feel the emotions.

Must be hard.

Being so happy and not knowing why.

You smile at the sight of me,

Not knowing my name or why.

Almost like your past life follows you.

Dementia may have removed the memories.

But your roots never die.

The way we made each other feel.

Is still there.

And all these leaves.

I have kept them safe in my fondest memory.

So that if dementia weakens its grip on you.

I will give them back to you.

A small-time to see the person I fell in love with.

And if its hold tightens.

I will forge all those memories in my smile, my hugs, my kiss.

So that you can see and feel all those memories.

I know it will only get worse.

Soon there will be no more leaves left at all.

So I guess I have more leaf picking to do.

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