One of the pleasures of running the Alzheimer's Poetry Project (APP)
is the people you meet.
Sarah Jacobus has been taking the the APP on-line training
and it is true delight to see how she is shaping the APP to her own voice and vision.
In addition, Jacobus has been certified in the storytelling project, "TimeSlips,"
and is taking an improv class!
The poems she has been creating with her groups in Los Angeles are full of strong images.
This is a photo Sarah took of a budding peach tree in her backyard.
She brought clipping from the tree to share with and inspire her group.
She asked a series of questions around the theme of trees
and the group's answers became the lines of the poem.
I can't wait to see what her and her poets come up with next.
It is an honor to share their poem with you.
I AM A TREE
(The poem “I Am a Tree,” inspired by the Joyce Kilmer poem “Trees,”
was created with Sarah Jacobus by the poets at OPICA,
a Los Angeles adult day program and counseling center for people with memory loss.)
I have a strong central bark
and branches with flowers at the end
I am mostly green
a little brown at the tips
but mostly green, that’s for sure
I am brown, solid and gray
with little touches of red and blue
I smell like sweet apple
I shade myself from being frightened
Refreshing, I smell the air in the neighborhood
It keeps me from thinking of bad things
Refreshing, and raring to go explore the area
maybe a deer, or a small squirrel there
a brook with stones that are smooth
They make a person feel real good about life.
We had an elm tree in the backyard
There was another tree like it
3,000 miles away in Connecticut
It had the same fragrance
I could jump back and forth between them
I sit at the top of a windy hill and feel
nostalgic about an old memory
I’m a tree that hides me from the world
and lets me think about
who I am
who I want to be
What a memory
Sarah Jacobus, LCSW, MFA, is a Los Angeles social worker with a Master of Fine Arts Degree in creative writing. She is committed to creative engagement for elders with memory loss as a tool for meaningful self-expression, community building and fun. Trained and certified by APP founder Gary Glazner, she is currently bringing the APP method to senior centers, care communities and individuals in Los Angeles County
Learn more about Sarah’s work at www.imaginethat.la