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The creak of a rocking chair,
Sounds endlessly for hours.
She sits there alone; all visitors turned away by the unresponsive look in her eyes.
Her bright flowered dress splays over the worn, dark wood of the chair,
A painful contrast to the unsuspecting eye.
She clutches the wide-eyed baby doll in her arms,
Like an object to give her strength at a time when nothing else can.
Her knobby knuckles, as wrinkled as an elephants hide,
Rub her weathered cheeks, as if trying to bring her lost memories to the surface
Like bread rising after kneading.
A kind-faced nurse bustles past.
The old woman stirs, but her gaze does not waver.
Back and forth she rocks.
Alone and distraught, searching for something impossible to find.
Her dull, lifeless eyes stare straight ahead, motionless.
But underneath, her brain works frantically,
Searching for any recognition of the life she once led.
The mind underneath her powdered white hair is a locked vault,
The key to open it, she lost long ago.
The memories of her wedding day, and the day her child was born,
Float around as if trapped in Daedalus’ ancient maze,
With no way of escaping except succumbing to the Minotaur that is forgetfulness.
Every so often, a shadowed picture will drift past her staring eyes,
Only to be lost again into an oblivion of memories.
Her mind strains to remember,
And a silent tear rolls down her cheek as she realizes she cannot.