Waiting for the Nursing Home Van, August 19, 2010   4 comments

Nearly 3PM, my dad and I have been waiting for the nursing home van to arrive since around 1pm to transport him to the Villa Nursing Home. Transport is the word used for prisoners, soon-to-be nursing home residents, and children who are wards of the state. It sucks. How to make people safe, comfortable or just plain captive is something that often just sucks.

I’ve seen both my parents turn old in a hospital bed. It happens when they sleep. Their mouths drop open, they mutter quiet but desperate murmurs and cluttered-catchy snores that whisper the age of their exhalations, not their age in years. The only clock is the heart in the chest. I watch his chest rise, and wonder if wishing it still is exactly what he wants or if the heart rules over the mind and any fear or desire and all other vague words stand alongside a heart and not inside it. A heart that started one spring and does not know quite know how to stop some 81 years  later. A compulsion and reliability unlike a late transport van that will take an old man to a new home filled with old hearts.

I pack his overalls, shirts, underwear, a picture of his mom, and his kids and wife and a few other items  he may never notice. I’ll take the cookies my sister bought him and a familiar blanket and pillow.

I’ll gather, plan, sort, carry and then wait some more.

Mary Strong Jackson


Posted August 19, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Have a Chair

4 responses to “Waiting for the Nursing Home Van, August 19, 2010

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  1. Wow….! I have a chair but will get a footstool and tall glass of ice tea! Transport is very personal, Love Lucy and Ed’s awesome works. And I’ve just begun! This is one for my Favorites – a nice retreat. Thanks for sharing such beautiful poetry, art and inspiration!


  2. So finally had time to check out your blog. This is great. What a great way to share your writing.


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