K is for kyrielle

K is for kyrielle. It is a French form based on the kyrie (Lord, have mercy, which is part of the church liturgy. This poetic form is written in quatrains (four-line stanzas). Each line has eight syllables. It can be written in various rhyme schemes, including aabb or abab. The “b” rhyme includes the fourth line,  which is repeated at the end of each quatrain. How the poem rhymes is up to the poet. In my poem, I chose an aabb rhyme scheme.

The topic of the poem is dementia, an illness that affects mostly elderly people. It is a disease that strikes without mercy. 

Visiting
the memory care unit
She
clutches a little stuffed bear
As
her hand wanders to her hair
She
was amazing in her prime
Her
lovely mind broken by time.
Shuffling
 aimlessly down the hall,
Always
watched for fear he will fall,
He
ran like the wind in his prime,
His
lovely mind broken by time.
Forgetting
that her husband died
She
awaits him like a young bride.
A
golden dancer in her prime,
Her
lovely mind broken by time.
Her
red anger flashes at night
She
will not go without a fight
She
expressed strong views in her prime
Her
lovely mind broken by time.
This
could happen to anyone
The
war from which we cannot run
Fighting
this is a sharp, steep climb
For
lovely minds broken by time.


5 thoughts on “K is for kyrielle”

  1. So sad and so beautiful. How wonderful of you to see the strength and youth within the pain of this ruinous condition. Whenever my elders have to go to the hospital or rehab, I take pictures of them in their prime and talk about their accomplishments or shenanigans to the aides and nurses. You're blessed with compassion and insight.

  2. This is powerful. The scientists who finally find a treatment for the dementias should be hailed as heroic, and statutes erected in their honor – instead of sports figures.

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