October 4, 2021

Poetry at Iona

Poetry at Iona

This past winter and summer, participants at Iona’s two adult day health centers got the chance to take part in the DC Department of Aging and Community Living’s Art, Music, and Poetry (AMP) project.

“Through our partnership with Iona, our older residents have the opportunity to build new and lasting friendships and engage in cultural enrichment through the creative arts,” says Laura Newland, Director of the DC Department and Aging and Community Living. “Whether it’s art, music, or poetry, this program provides more ways for older adults with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias to share their stories with the world in a supportive community. We’re grateful to partner in this critical program that allows our older residents to continue to live boldly, through the arts, at every age, stage, and ability.”

Below are poems created by participants as part of the AMP program.

Blessings All Around Me by Ms. A

Remember the beautiful people you meet from day to day
Remember the things in life to make you laugh
Remember when someone is kind to you
Remember how beautiful the world is
Remember the people that touch your life from day to day
Remember those who are less fortunate than you are
Remember what puts a smile on your face
Remember the memories you have of each person who changes your life
Remember to always treat others the way you want to be treated

Your life is a blessing.

Surrounded by so many
beautiful people.

Your life is a gift
from day to day.

Your life will be full
of beautiful memories

of the people we love.

Untitled by Ms. J

Oh music playing I would follow where we go together home
to the city streets I walk to play all day until we were called for milk
and cookies.

It is a wish as well as a memory and as I write I hear the piano
playing of my Mother.

Thank you, and yes, Father standing by you
is singing – Oh may I hear your melodies, loved ones,
parents, I will hear the music.

All different moons all around me by Mr. A

Sunny moonlight fell on me
Orange moonlight fell on feet
Full moonlight fell on heads
Yellow moonlight fell on seas
Blue moonlight fell on rivers

Group poem – Wellness & Arts Center

Apples, aches, air
Babbling brooks and balls
Cats playing with catnip
Dancing dinosaurs Dancing dresses
Elves eating eggs
Friends following friends
God’s got it

Group poem – Washington Home Center participants

“I love you, but I have to go to work.”
Love is work
You gotta put effort in
This is a contract with no salary
We need our tools and help
Sweat and security
Without retirement or vacation
We need joy
The glue that bonds us.
Let’s be coworkers, not clients
“Hey boss, let’s have a meeting.”

Iona’s Sillys by Jonathan B. Tucker and Washington Home Center participants

it was the House of Silly
and the grins were grand
there was a couch in the kitchen
cooking cushions by hand
on my way in, the doorbell I rang
I heard a toilet flush
and a cannonball clang
I stepped through the bubble
that was the front door
the living room was slanted
thirty degrees off the floor
the slipping and sliding was
part of the built-in fun
like the campfire in the kitchen
made of thirty suns
have you ever washed your hands
at an indoor waterfall?
and a tricycle in a stall
you can skydive from atop
the stairs to the basement
to the bouncy house below
put there with purposeful placement
there is a portal to the attic
under the stairs
and a closet in the cabinet
where we relax on rocking chairs
all the cups are shoes
and the utensils are gummy
my friends at Iona Health
thought that was real funny

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