the healing muse

Volume 13, 2013

Treatment of Choice

Deborah Gang

My husband’s brain has lost almost all faculties—except worry.
Though my nature is honest (nothing to brag about he would have
said) now I practice mendacity and duplicity. They mean the same
though one sounds cruel and one silky. Compassionate lying they
call it in the Alzheimer's biz—but I invented it. Necessity does that.
No sweetie, I assure, ignore the TV; our investments are doing just
fine. The house on Greenwood? We sold it for a million five. It was
a beauty and they paid up. No, no, the kids do visit. One was here
last week and one due Friday. They’ll both call tonight

Hearing my theatre, people lecture: I am taking his dignity. Where
is the dignity in agony I counter? Where is the grace in distress?
Where is the love in truth?

He watches as my critic and I volley, then his eyes settle on mine,
at peace for the moment, knowing our money is safe, the children
are coming and the stranger who says she is his wife will answer
all his questions.

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