Saturday, November 06, 2010
The Alzheimer's Poetry Project of New York
The Alzheimer’s Poetry Project in New York works with groups of affected seniors to create poems in English, Hebrew, Spanish and Yiddish.
Here's a poem from the project included in an interview with the program's founder, Gary Glazner, at http://www.thelmagazine.com/TheMeasure/archives/2010/11/04/talking-oral-history-memory-and-dementia-with-the-alzheimers-poetry-project
Do you have a poem from the most recent anthology you'd be willing to share with us?
Here is a poem created by the poetry group at the Latino Geratric Center in Milwaukee from our new Spanish anthology. We performed this dicho using "call and response" with the group, then asked them to describe their first kiss.
Pan es pan, queso es queso
no hay amor si no hay un beso.
Bread is bread, cheese is cheese,
there is no love without a kiss.
When I was a child,
I would ask my parents for bread and cheese.
They could not give it to me.
But they could give me love.
My first boyfriend, we only held hands.
Love is greater than bread and cheese.
When I went to the store,
there was no bread or cheese.
But I found a girl to kiss.
I would wait down by the river,
my girlfriend would come to get water for her family,
then we would kiss.
I told him, you can kiss me here.
(she points to her cheek.)
You can kiss me here.
(she points to her lips.)
But you don’t kiss me below here.
(She draws a line across her neck.)
When you are a teenager
At 14, 15, or 16 you dream a lot
But at 18 you already know
to say yes or no,
then you can eat your dessert.