I didn’t plan to grow old like this

Posted on by AARP Oregon

By Dick Weinman, The Thin Edge of Dignity I was startled by the noise behind me – the clicketey-clack of wheels on the carpet of my apartment. I turned my head.  There she was – hunched over that unique walker, with its funny looking transporters –- the rear cut-in-half -neon-lemon tennis balls; the front baby stroller wheels. And the sorry wail:  “Is the lady in charge here?”  An all too familiar sound:  whiny, throaty, and uncertain.  Here in my apartment …

Lost are the flowers

Posted on by AARP Oregon

By Dick Weinman Lost Are The Flowers   ‘Where have all the flowers gone?’ Lost, lost.  In the dark maze, lost: In the gnarls and twists, the deformed limbs of her mind’s forest, Trapped in the twining ivy up from the ground, Clinging to the pathways to the mind, Choking the channels, the roads. The mind overcome by weeds, stumps, wet, heavy leaves, Covered with dirt; muddy, dark dirt, Blocking all vestiges light and memory. So, ‘where have all the …

Your Picture

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Editor’s Note: Dick Weinman’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife will appear for several weeks in his poems and essays. Your Picture   I gaze into your picture, Trying to see through your eyes, They smile. But . . . You hide it well, the black corruption of your brain, The darkness of your mind’s night, The in and out shadows of what once was and now is: That …

He’ll Never Know

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Editor’s Note: Dick’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife will appear for several weeks in his poems and essays.   By Dick Weinman   When I first got here, I heard Richie’s voice every day.  Dear Richie.  I called him Richie.  His real name is Richard, I think.  We’d been married a long, long time. Each morning, Richie came into the kitchen where I was staying.  One of the …

I’ll Never Know

Posted on by AARP Oregon

Editor’s Note: Dick’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife will appear for several weeks in his poems and essays. By Dick Weinman I had come to visit Ginny. It was our fifty-seventh wedding anniversary. I could still see that long-ago moment. We stood under the Chuppah.  I raised my leg and stomped, shattering the glass from which Ginny and I had just sipped the wine of our wedded unity. …

I’ll Never Know (Poem)

Posted on by AARP Oregon

Editor’s Note: Dick’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife will appear for several weeks in his poems and essays. By Dick Weinman I’ll Never Know You drop deeper into the chair, fall back, as your  legs pop up on the footrest. From within your white washed face – a whiteout of expression – Your  green eyes squinting and enlarged,  Mis-shapen through your thick lenses Like the reflection in the …

Wonders

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Editor’s Note: Dick’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife will appear for several weeks in his poems and essays. By Dick Weinman Wonders There was a time of sun and moon and stars, Of happy days and joyous nights, Of laughter, life, and love. There was a time when spirits soared, When hopes arose and dreams were born, When the road lay open, long, and free; And nothing there …

Fingers of Farewell

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Editor’s Note: Dick Weinman’s life in an ALF parallel’s his wife’s life in an Alzheimer’s Facility.  His feelings about his wife appear in his poems and essays. Fingers of Farewell Departing fingertips,  reaching for the last wisp of touch. Click,  click, as smooth nails slip past one another. Farewell to remembrance, to thought, to knowing, But feelings remain. There is a bond . . . Of  love. And fingers curl together once more, Tightening  firmly, but gently. Holding fast – and …

A Living Death & A Farewell Breath

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Editor’s Note: We are saddened to inform you that Dick’s wife, Ginny, died on December 13th. She was surrounded by several of her children. Dick wrote the following A Farewell Breath to precede A Living Death which follows below. A FAREWELL BREATH In the blog  A Living Death, I wrote of the effect upon my wife, Ginny’s, brain by the rapacious ravaging of Alzheimer’s. I predicted how her struggle to be would end: her inability to walk, to talk, to eat, …

AARP Oregon Announces New Diversity Advisory Council Members

Posted on by AARP Oregon

Council helps address the changing needs of 50-plus Oregonian population CLACKAMAS—AARP Oregon has appointed four new members to its Oregon Diversity Advisory Council (DAC). Portland area residents, Walter Lander, Juanita Santana and Robby Sherwin, as well as Dallas, Oregon resident, Judy Bowen have all joined the DAC. The DAC helps provide guidance and support to AARP Oregon staff and volunteer leaders to ensure diversity and inclusion in all AARP activities, including the recruitment, orientation, and support of volunteers. “AARP is …