This blog will be a place to post poetry written by people living with Alzheimer's disease. We will focus on poetry that is created as part of the Alzheimer's Poetry Project. We will post information and news about dementia. We hope this blog is of use to the family members who have a loved one with dementia.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Ballad of the Happy Guitar

The poets of Sierra Vista Assisted Living created this poem on December 5th, 2012 with poet Gary Glazner.

Our model poem was Edward Lear's “The Owl and the Pussy Cat,” with its wonderful line “...the owl looked up to the stars above and sang to a small guitar.”

The daughter of one of the participants, the writer Abby Frucht had asked us to read a poem she had written for her mother, which we incorporated into our performance. That poem in the form of a letter is included below. We created the poem by asking the participants what makes them happy.

We took our cue from Abby’s poem and while performing the poem and we all strummed imaginary "air-guitars."

Ballad of the Happy Guitar
A happy guitar,
with my husband.
Everything makes me happy.
Anyone makes me happy.
To dance makes me happy.
The Owl and the Pussy Cat!
Having you here.
It’s nothing immediate.
The sound a mandolin
makes me happy.
My father played
the mandolin.
I want to dance some more!
When I am feeling well
and I have good people with me,
that makes me happy.

Dear Mom,

I remember a song called
“The Sad Guitar.”
You sang it
to Sylvia and Liz and Me
when we were little girls.
We loved it.
You strummed it for us
on an air guitar
whenever we wanted
to hear it.
The guitar was sad
but you make us happy.


Strumming Air Guitars

Friday, November 16, 2012

APP in Seoul, South Korea

by Kim So-wol
(Translation by Brother Anthony)

When seeing me sickens you
and you walk out
I'll send you off without a word, no fuss.

Yongbyon's mount Yaksan's
by the armful I'll scatter in your path.

With parting steps
on those strewn flowers
treading lightly, go on, leave.

When seeing me sickens you
and you walk out
why, I'd rather die than weep one tear.

APP workshop in Seoul, South Korea on Nov. 1st, 2012 This workshop was led by Gary Glazner and Michelle Otero on using poetry to enhance the creativity of people living with dementia through the performance and creation of poetry. The workshop was sponsored by the Koran Art and Culture Education Service. KACES is a government agency under Ministry of Culture supporting arts and culture education through Korea in many different arts field - public schools and communities including childcare centers, facilities for the elderly/the disabled, military officers and correctional facilities. More info at:

Jim on Dementia Arts

Jim describes participating in the Memory Arts Cafe performance at IONA Senior Services on Thursday, Sept. 20th in Washington DC. The event was part of the Dementia Arts Festival and featured musician Judith-Kate Friedman, Songwriting Works, dancer Maria Genne, Kairos Alive! and poet Gary Glazner More info at

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Jelly Fish

A special session of the Memory Arts Café took place on Saturday, October 13th, as part of
Parachute: the Coney Island Performance Festival at the New York Aquarium.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Two New Poems

Screaming Under Water                   

I don’t like silence,
I like this.
Have the children been out today?
I love silence.
The orchid is lavender,
like the shirt of the aide.
Beautiful sounds –
I have a stack of cd’s and books,
I have nothing else.
Love makes a house a home.
I have loved
every person I have ever known.
It never goes away –
I never lose any of it.
The woman who screams under water
is in a lot of pain,
but not above the water.
If you wanted to join the Red Cross
you had to swim many laps
to prove your endurance.
I am a person who needs
a lot of time – I am a Buddhist
and I got this out of it.
The love is impressed through every letter.
One thing that could not be taken away:
Could you close the window? –
I’m cold.
I want to be out of here.

Silence in the Storm

Silence can say more than speaking.
It can be more intense
and safer.
My godfather was an evangelist.
He used to say: that’s another star in your crown.
My mother once told me
to go to her bedroom,
but don’t touch the brush,
lay down on your stomach
and don’t move.
What crimes do three-year olds make?
In a sports game I expect
to be bounced around like a ball.
Shoes used to be filled with straw for warmth.
A black orchid keeps Brenda Star alive.
Sometime’s silence is not enough.
Either the poet was battered,
or he did the battering.
I used to dream so often,
I don’t so much anymore –
I am kind of thankful for that.

Screaming Under Water and  Silence in the Storm were created in sessions in Santa Fe, New Mexico led by APP artist Joanne Dwyer working with the poets of Kingston and Rosemont  respectively.  The model poems Dwyer used included: “Silence” Billy Collins; “A Poem for S.” Jessica Greenbaum; “Don’t Tell Anyone” Tony Hoagland and “Home” Edgar Albert Guest. 

Dwyer writes of one of the sessions, " The atmosphere at can be quite chaotic as was this visit. It made it hard at times to talk above the volume. I was nervous, unsure of how this session would go and was relieved and greatly surprised (and pleased) that once I began reading the first poem the whole place hushed and a sense of quiet and peace ensued."

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Memory Arts Café

New York Memory Center & Alzheimer’s Poetry Project Present
Memory Arts Café

Brooklyn, NY – September 12, 2012 – Memory Arts Café is a new series of free art events for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public and is co-produced by New York Memory Center and the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project. 

The series, which takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month, includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists.

This Memory Arts Café event features Jesse Neuman, musician and Founder and Director of MusicWorks NYC. Poet Gary Glazner will host the event. 

Wednesday, October 10th, at 6 pm
New York Memory Center
199 14th Street at 4th Avenue 
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(Take the R to Prospect Ave.)
For info: call (718) 499-7701

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Dementia Arts Festival

National Center for Creative Aging & Alzheimer’s Poetry Project Present Dementia Arts Festival

We are thrilled to announce a series of performances focused on bringing attention to the expanding opportunities the arts bring to people with Alzheimer’s. The events take place at Washington DC assisted living and adult day care centers in support of the National Alzheimer’s Plan Act. For a full festival schedule please see

Memory Arts Café Performance Thursday, September 20th, 6 to 8pm Iona Senior Services, 4125 Albemarle Street, Washington, DC 20016.

You are invited to a performance for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public. New Mexico poet Stuart Hall reads work documenting his experience in living with dementia. Maria Genne, Kairos Dance and Judith-Kate Friedman, Songwriting Works and Gary Glazner, Alzheimer’s Poetry Project will lead the audience in the creation of a new performance. The event includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists. We are excited to show an excerpt from Anne Bastings’ film “Penelope Project,” which documents the performance of using the Penelope story from Homer’s Odyssey to engage an entire long-term care community in the creative process and Songwriting Works’ new music video, “WWII Homecoming Song.”

Sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association Washington DC Chapter, Center for Aging Heath and Humanities, Generations United, Iona Senior Services, and the Society Arts and Healthcare with support from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, the Helen Bader Foundation, the MetLife Foundation and the Pabst Charitable Foundation for the Arts.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Memory Arts Cafe, August 8th, 6pm

New York Memory Center
and Alzheimer’s Poetry Project
Present Memory Arts Cafe

This Memory Arts Cafe event will highlight the artists of New York Memory Center in performance. They will lead the audience in the creation of new work featuring music, dance, poetry and collage. Poet Gary Glazner will host the event. PLUS a SUMMER BBQ!

The performers and artists include: Ismail Butera, Musician in Residence; David Azarch, Percussionist in Residence; Ruth Azarch, Artist; Pamela Lawton, Artist; Jennie Smith-Peers, Improv and the Rhythm Breaks Dance Group.

Wednesday, August 8th, at 6 pm
New York Memory Center

199 14th Street at 4th Avenue • Brooklyn, NY 11215
(Take the R to Prospect Ave.)
For info: call (718) 499-7701 or visit

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Daughter Love

Daughter Love

She wakes at eight in her bed with the rail,
She smiles in delight, with nary a wail.
I relish her babytalk, hug her and kiss her,
Changing her diaper, I wash her and dress her.
We kiss and we sing, she gurgles with laughter,
Miss Jolly, spoon-fed, gazes sweetly thereafter.
She teethes CD cases, whate’er’s at arm’s length,
Her joy is contagious -- from where comes her strength?
I drop her at Day Care, and muse to another,
“But I am not childless, I’ve an Alzheimer’s mother.”

The poem "Daughter Love" is written by Lucine Kasbarian for her mother Alice Hamparian Kasbarian. The photograph is of her mother and father Charles Kasbarian.

Writer, book publicist and political cartoonist Lucine Kasbarian is a descendant of survivors of the 1915 Turkish genocide of the Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks, which drove her grandparents from their native lands in Western Armenia (now within the borders of Turkey). She is the author of Armenia: A Rugged Land, an Enduring People (Simon & Schuster) and The Greedy Sparrow: An Armenian Tale (Marshall Cavendish). Her syndicated articles appear in media outlets around the world. Lucine and her husband, writer David Boyajian, live in Massachusetts and New Jersey.
More info on Kasbarian's work here.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Memory Arts Cafe

Memory Arts Café is a new series of free art events for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public and is co-produced by New York Memory Center and the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project. The series, which takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month, includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists.

This Memory Arts Café event will feature dancer Heidi Latsky in performance and she will lead the audience in the creation of a new dance. Poet Gary Glazner will host the event.

Wednesday, July 11 at 6 pm New York Memory Center 199 14th Street at 4th Avenue • Brooklyn, NY 11215 (Take the R to Prospect Ave.) For info: call (718) 499-7701 or visit

"Latsky asks us to look at people for what they are capable of, rather than what they can't do." - The Washington Post

"Latsky…diminutive vessel of energy, concentration, and passion- personifies that state every dancer aspires to-in which intent and execution are one." -The Village Voice

About the performer: HEIDI LATSKY the Artistic Director of Heidi Latsky Dance has been a moving force in the dance world for many years, as a choreographer for stage, theater and film. Latsky initially received recognition as a celebrated principal dancer for Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance. In addition to creating more than fifteen works for Heidi Latsky Dance, Latsky has been commissioned to create new work by the Cannes International Dance Festival, American Dance Festival, the Joyce Theater: Altogether Different Festival, Performance Space 122, 92nd Street Y, Alvin Ailey Dance Center, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Heidi Latsky Dance was a recipient of a 2006 rehearsal residency at the Baryshnikov Arts Center and a residency at the Abrons Arts Center, 2009 where GIMP premiered. Latsky is an innovator in disability arts. Her piece GIMP features four trained dancers and four performers who have physical disabilities. It turns on its head accepted notions of dance, performance and body image. Latsky and company have created a piece of work that is a natural and completely unique vehicle for dialogue, increased understanding and civic engagement.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Faulty Wiring

Faulty Wiring
Bob MacLaughlin

Their smiles shatter
and they utter that pitying "ohhh..."
when I tell them

Pop has Alzheimer's
as if he's afflicted with tragedy
not just faulty wiring

as if there's no way he and I
could have laughed our guts out
the other day when we heard

that giant clunking noise
and he jammed the brakes on,

"What the hell was that?!"
and I got out to look up and down
the street but found nothing

until I caught his cane in the act
of running away again, it having slid
down from moon roof

and hooked itself around the ham radio
antenna on the trunk, wagging
like the tail of a mischievous dog.

More info on Faulty Wiring at Moon Pie Press

Link to an interview with MacLaughlin on WABI

MacLaughlin wrote Faulty Wiring in tribute to his father Wilson Furness "Bud" MacLaughlin.

In addition to writing poetry, MacLaughlin has been a newspaper sportswriter, magazine editor, and advertising copywriter for print and broadcast. He once wrote a column decrying the outrageously high price of ringside Ali-Frazier tickets ($25). He likes writing poems because you can make up whatever you want, and you don't have to worry about deadlines (unless you agree to a book) or pleasing your client's relatives. Bob has lived fulltime in midcoast Maine since 1979 and aspires to be a native.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Memory Arts Café

New York Memory Center & Alzheimer’s Poetry Project Launch
New York State’s First Memory Arts Café

Memory Arts Café is a new series of free art events for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public, and is co-produced by New York Memory Center and the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project. The series takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month and includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists. 

Wednesday, June 13 at 6 pm
New York Memory Center
199 14th Street at 4th Avenue • Brooklyn, NY 11215
(Take the R to Prospect Ave.)
For info: call (718) 499-7701 or visit
About the performers:
Legendary jazz critic, Nat Hentoff, has praised Roger’s work as "the most joyously encouraging way of expanding the audience for jazz."  In partnership with the NYC Alzheimer Association Chapter and jazz singer, Peter Eldridge, Ms. Rogers has produced two Alzheimer's benefit concerts entitled “For Those We Love.” (

The Boston Globe wrote of pianist, composer, educator, and bandleader Mark Kross "Kross digs hard with a bright contemporary piano style with Monkish bop influences.” He is the Head of the Music Department at the Middlesex School, an independent high school in Concord, MA and has released five CD’s with his band, The Mark Kross Five-Piece Trio.

About the producers:
Founded in 1983, the mission of New York Memory Center is to help older adults who have cognitive, physical, and emotional limitations, to maintain or improve their level of functioning so that they may enjoy their later years at home and within the community. Through an innovative wellness center, New York Memory Center meets the needs of individuals living with Alzheimer’s and related dementia disorders and their Caregivers. NYMC offers two primary programs: Lotus Club, an early intervention and support program for those experiencing the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s and related dementias; and Memory Life Services, a program which provides more extensive services suitable for adults in the community with middle to later stage memory loss. For additional information, please visit

Gary Glazner founded the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project (APP) in 2004. The APP was awarded the 2012 MetLife Foundation Creativity and Aging in America Leadership Award in the category of Community Engagement. The National Endowment for the Arts listed the APP as a “best practice” for their Arts and Aging initiative. NBC's “Today” show, NPR's “All Things Considered” and Voice of America have featured segments on the APP.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

New York Times on Frontotemporal Dementia

Powerful article in the New York Times by Denise Grady on Frontotemporal Dementia.

The photograph is by Béatrice de Géa.
The video that accompanies the writing is amazing, with strong graphic shots of the couple featured in the article. Hearing their voices is heartbreaking.
The harrowing piece ends with an ee cummings  poem that the couple shares:

i carry your heart with me(i carry it in

my heart)i am never without it(anywhere

i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done

by only me is your doing,my darling)

i fear no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want

no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Thing About Life

The Thing About Life
Elizabeth Raby
It's a strange thing about life--
how we want it, no matter what--
the cane, the hearing aid,
the oxygen pulled along behind us
like a grocery cart, which, of course,
it sort of is, feeding us our necessaries.
For the fortunate, the brain continues to function
at more or less its accustomed pace--
a little clog, a blockage here and there,
but we manage to work around them,
process and produce.  Through
my thicker lenses, around my
growing cataracts, I still am able to see
the hummingbird, iridescent green speck
riding purple-leaved branch of the plum tree
in early morning breeze. Behind them
 once again the sun clears the mountain.

Elizabeth Raby has been a poet in the schools for the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts, the New Jersey Council of the Arts, and the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation. She taught poetry writing at Muhlenberg College.  Raby represented the Teachers for Tomorrow program as an English Teacher in Deva, Romania.  Her publications include The Hard Scent of Peonies, Jasper Press, Camphorwood, Nightshade Press, and Ten Degrees Above Zero, Jasper Press. She has lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico since 2001 where she and her husband run a monthly open poetry reading.  Raby is a member of the board of New Mexico Literary Arts and a Fellow of the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.
More on Raby's books and poetry from Visual Artists Collective

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Poetry at MoMA

Picasso! Rousseau! Van Gogh! This "art cheer," celebrates the 3 artists highlighted during the Dec. 13th, 2011, session of Meet Me at MoMA. The session was co-lead by Francesca Rosenberg, Director of Community and Access Programs and APP director Gary Glazner. More on Meet Me at MoMA at:

Saturday, March 31, 2012

New York Times Review of Needham's "When We Forget"

Allan Kozinn describes the piece as "...stunning," and that the"...brilliantly orchestrated score is both dreamy and harrowing.

Here is a link to the review of Clint Needham's piece, "When We Forget," in the New York Times.

Many thanks to Needham for including my poem, "We Are Forget," which he says inspired the piece for including the poem in the Carnegie Hall program. It was really fun looking around the hall as people read their programs and imaging them reading the poem! I have included the poem and a link to Needham's story in a post below.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

For My Father, With Alzheimer's

For My Father, With Alzheimer's
Jeanne Marie Spicuzza

Just because you can’t remember
you wanted two children
and I was the third.

Doesn’t mean you have forgotten
I watched you fix the vacuum
and paint the pier.

Just because you can’t remember
I wore the same striped shirt as yours
and you were my hero.

Doesn’t mean you have forgotten
you coached me in little league
and did a handstand when

I caught the last fly ball of the season.
We went to Dairy Queen
for hot fudge sundaes.

It meant a lot ‘cause
you were principled
but you were stingy.

Just because you can’t remember
after Mom died, you became generous.
You felt so guilty.

Doesn’t mean you have forgotten
you slept next to her clothes
and never married again.

Just because you can’t remember
to clean the house
tie your shoes

feed the cat
take your insulin
or go to the bathroom,

doesn’t mean you have forgotten
that you are my father.
And I love you.

Your Alzheimer’s may take
your body, mind
and memories.

But your heart
lives on
in me.

Do not be afraid
of the dark place
where things wither.

I will not forget.
I will remain and remember
for both of us.

This poem was written for Robert Alan Spicuzza by a friend from the early days of the Poetry Slam. We met back in the day in Milwaukee and it is an pleasure to include her work here. More info on Spicuzza and her work at Seasons & a Muse, Inc

Jeanne Marie Spicuzza is a writer, actress, film producer and master herbalist, and the founder and CEO of Seasons & a Muse, Inc., a seven division arts and entertainment cooperative corporation. She is published in Shepherd Express, Poetry Motel, Poetic Diversity, Blue Fifth Review, Quill & Parchment and others. She has featured on radio, television and film like NPR, BBC, Lifetime Television and more. The recipient and nominee of several prestigious awards, including the Shepherd Express Performance Artist of the Year, the Golden Headset Award and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Nicholl Fellowship Award, Jeanne Marie performs internationally. She is currently in active development of five independent motion pictures.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Carnegie Hall- Clint Needham- When We Forget

Thrilled to announce this Saturday, March 24th at 7pm at Carnegie Hall is the world premier of "When We Forget," by the composer Clint Needham which was inspired by my poem, "We Are Forget." You may hear part of the composition at: Dementia Weekly Blog

Needham writes about his experience as a father of twins leading him to think about memories of their lives and how that led him to research memory. During his research he came on the Alzheimer's Poetry Project website and my poem, "We Are Forget," which he generously credits as his inspiration. I was knocked out when he wrote me a few months ago to tell me about the composition.

The piece was commissioned by the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra more on them at:

We Are Forget
Gary Glazner

We are the words we have forgotten.
We are shifting and pacing.
We wrote this poem.
It’s a pretty poem.
Can you bake a cherry pie?
Never more, never more.
We have no horizon.
We don’t recall washing or eating
or what you just said.
Ask me my name.
Ask me if I have children?
You’re a pretty lady.
You have beautiful eyes.
Wash me, put me to bed clean,
hold me as I fall asleep.
Give me a kiss, brush my hair.
You are my daughter?
Light washing over us moment, moment.
You’re a handsome man.
Our hand writing is beautiful
twists and loops of letters
we can’t remember our hands.
Our ears are wishful
we can’t remember our ears.
We can speak every language,
we can’t remember our mouths.
We are porous.
We are the past.
We are forget.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Searching For Cecy by Judy Prescott

Photograph of Cecy, Maine, 1970

What a pleasure it was to learn of Judy Prescott's poetry written in tribute to her mother Cecy. The new book by the poet and actress is illustrated with gorgeous artwork by members of Cecy's family. Prescott's poetry is powerful and a touchstone for anyone who has a loved one navigating memory loss. What I want to say is while the book brings tears it also brings hope. More on Prescott and Searching for Cecy below.

Excerpt from the book’s introduction —

“I have learned to quietly step into Cecy’s world, leaving all of our shared history behind me. Every moment with my mother is entirely new…there is no before or after. She remains a scintillating, funny woman who is a pleasure to spend time with.

My mother took a great interest in my poetry and helped me to edit my work. An English major who could do the Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle in an hour, she was no slouch with words. She often asked why I never wrote about her. I told her to be careful what she wished for and ironically, she won out in the end.”


Sometimes it’s better to loosen
the spring line
and let her
float away.

If the storm is that great,
why keep her tethered,
battering herself to pieces
at the dock?

Let her go.
Watch her float peacefully away
under a grey and turbulent sky.

A last grand sail into
whatever lies beyond.

A graceful exit from all things
measured and charted.

Beautiful ketch,
I release you.

More info on Searching For Cecy here

Prescott's Interview on ABC

Judy Prescott, born in Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, has spent the past twenty-five years working as a professional actress. Based in both New York City and Los Angeles, she has performed many roles on stage and screen. Her most recent work includes episodes of True Blood, Grey’s Anatomy, Cold Case, Bones, and the films Islander and Hit and Runway.

A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter. More than 37,000 Mainers are currently living with Alzheimer’s disease, and nearly 150,000 friends and family members provide unpaid care for them.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Dear St. Dymphna

an Alzheimer’s Prayer

You are not the simple country girl
doe-eyed on the prayer card

but a closet organizer, one who
takes a battered shoebox full

of memories to draw a clock face,
remembering the way fingers clasp

when they are joined in prayer.
I think of you as a carpenter

who crafts a carved gothic vault
inside the mind’s dark nave, the candle

waiting to be relit, a voice passing
in a litany of saints, a labyrinth’s thread.

I see you there always reaching out,
but how hard it is to recollect your name.

Dear St. Dymphna is dedicated to Bruce Meyer's father Homer Meyer who passed away 2006. Homer Meyer was an electrical engineer and wrote numerous codes and international standards as well as designing major hydraulic projects such as the lift system on the Canso Causeway in Nova Scotia.

Bruce Meyer has published 34 books including three last fall: Alphabestiary: A Poetry Emblem Book (with H. Masud Taj, Exile Editions), The White Collar Book: Canadian Poetry and Prose of the Professional World (with Carolyn Meyer, Black Moss Press), and A Book of Bread (Exile Editions). He was a national bestseller in 2000 with The Golden Thread: A Reader’s Journey Through the Great Books (Harper Collins). He is a professor of English at Georgian College in Barrie Ontario where he teaches in the Laurentian University BA Program. Meyer is the inaugural Poet Laureate of the City of Barrie.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Confused the Hours by Huw Parsons

It’s seldom that I see her,
Except there in the mirror.
It’s then I glimpse the mysterious face,
Of that woman who’s taking over my place.

She stole money from my purse and more deceives,
Pulled the rug from my feet and lost the keys.
Such pure pandemonium and to make me a mockery,
Piles high the sink with my best broken crockery.

She eats my food, so I hide it in the shed
And leaves out in the rain almost every book I've read.
Much mayhem, mischief and misunderstanding,
In all of which this witch has had a hand in.

Every night as I sleep she's standing by the bed,
So such vivid dreams they flicker through my head -
Whilst downstairs an army of furniture removers,
Shifts the heavy sofa through some tight manoeuvres.

She’s touched the clocks, confused the hours
And tampered with the fairest flowers.
So my roses ‘Peace’ and ‘Ena Harkness,’
Now in the garden bloom in darkness.

And like a full moon she can curdle fresh milk
And is even stranger than the shore of Acker Bilk.
To her ailments she’s a martyr, quite the little Joan of Arc,
So I search the drawers for tinder and some means to make a spark!

Proud to start the New Year with this poem and painting honoring his mother Marjorie Parsons by the Welsh artist and writer Huw Parsons. Not only is Parsons a talented poet and painter, he also embarks on delightful poetry projects like "chalking up" poems all over the town of Brecon.

For More info on the poetry and painting of Huw Parsons and to see images of his poetry projects click here.

Huw Parsons was born in 1954 and grew up in Llyswen, a village some ten miles or so west of Hay on Wye. He was educated at Brecon Boys’ Grammar School and Chelsea College of Art. He’s worked as a painter, filmmaker, lecturer, antique dealer, watch repairer and an author and photographer.

In many ways Huw is neither ‘fish nor fowl.’ As a border person he thinks of himself as being neither wholly English nor particularly Welsh and because of his life’s diversity has become a social impostor and a cultural chameleon. As for writing he believes that he’s no particular gift, except for having a dogged determination, combined with being observant, having a good ear and an ability to write in simple, descriptive English. His literary influences include the poems of John Betjeman and Phillip Larkin, the novels of Leslie Thomas and the song lyrics of Sting and Jake Thackray.