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Power of Poetry and Memory Loss

As part of the National Memory Day project, poet Karen Hayes created a poem using lines contributed by people whose lives have been touched by dementia; read here by researchers, poets and supporters of the National Memory Day Project.

The first line was contributed by Sir Andrew Motion, President of National Memory Day and former Poet Laureate.

Please do contribute your poems on the subject of memory via the comments box below.

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10 thoughts on “Power of Poetry and Memory Loss”

  1. ‘I’m like a kiddie
    holding something
    from the fair –
    seedheads today like
    exploding fireworks –
    when it gets to the top –
    when it bursts out. ‘

    Poem made from words of residents of Highwell House Nursing Home in Herefordshire, where I work regularly.

  2. Beautifully haunting, thanks for sharing Abegail. In return, here’s one of mine x

    Visiting hours

    Her hands don’t belong here
    bewildered starfish beached on the table.
    She wants to put them away
    with the napkins and knives.

    When the doorbell rings she answers the fridge
    confused and then thrilled
    to see her teeth grinning back.

    She thought it’d be her daughter
    nods polite to the woman who’s stolen her name.

    Later she remembers the time
    shuffles in slippers to find it again.

    published in Memory Weaving: An Anthology about Dementia Journeys by Poetica Christi Press 2014

  3. Have I told you
    I repeat myself
    Not to make a point
    Not to make sure
    you have heard me
    Not for you at all
    in fact. What I say
    may not matter
    but I say it anyway
    And saying it twice
    makes me realise
    things are never
    the same when said again

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