Love, Poetry, Spirituality

i see you, i love you, i miss you

Version 2
I love this pic of my amazing mom Patty and me, September 9, 2015.

Many people think people who live with dementia disappear. I used to think that too. I was so wrong.

Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia are brain diseases. They cause changes in the brain. They do not cause changes in the heart, the soul or the spirit. The poem below, which I wrote and first posted in April 2014, is  dedicated to seeing people with dementia as the people they still are. It’s dedicated in particular to my mom Mary Patricia (Patty) Eustace Macaulay who died on August 17, 2016. I was blessed to hold Mom’s hand as she left this world, and to be able to write about being with her in her final hour here.

I saw her ever so clearly in these last years, and together we breathed her last breath. What a blessing.


i see you

a poem by punkie


you are
not the you
i have watched,
and hoped for
these 60 years
and yet
you are

i see you
then and now:
a brave soul

i see
unmistakable you
in a raised eyebrow
and the furrow by its side

i see you
in a gesture:
the roll of an eye,
the bite of a nail,
the set of an upper lip,
the clap of a hand

i see you
in the way
you touch
your hair
with your
to feel if it is
as it should be

i see you
in a barely
discernible reaction
to something
or someone
you like
or don’t

i use
these hints
and clues
and traces
to recreate you
even as god
reclaims you
bit by bit

no one else
sees you
as i do

there you are
in a shaft
of light
or a break
in the clouds
or at the piano

i see you
and me
and love
in the mirror

i see you
more clearly
more closely
more acutely
than ever before

i see you
as you were
and as you are
not as who
i wished
you had been

i see you
even with
my eyes closed.
even through the tears.


April 10, 2014

© Susan Macaulay 2016. I invite you to share the links widely, but please do not reprint or reblog or copy and paste my poems into other social media without my permission. Thank you.

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5 thoughts on “i see you, i love you, i miss you”

  1. I would love to share your poem. My Mom has Alzheimers…I am her only child. Dad passed away 13 years ago. My husband and I have no Mom is stuck with only me…we know each other more than most people know one another..we too have had rough patches….and even though she talks with mostly indecipherable words….oh yes….it is so true….I do see her!!! Always! Your poem hit home …hard! Thank you!


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