Lights of a Stroke

AuthorSomer Leathern

DateSpring 2019

For my grandmother


Lights, lights, lights

all she sees is lights

on the movie screen and

next to her I sat

so young and watched

things she never liked

the lights, lights, lights

of her computer where

my small fingers made

2D masterpieces on Paint Y

of lights, lights, lights

in Sears reflecting off

the cheap emerald stone

she bought for my sweet 16th

and the lights, lights, lights

irritated her eyes

that ached and couldn’t

drive to my farewell party

which I didn’t invite

her to anyway because

I forgot like how she now

forgets my name and under the

lights, lights, lights

of the hospital room dad sobs

because he didn’t love his

mother soon enough

and he can’t see her

through tears like she

can’t see him through the

lights, lights, lights

of my cellphone when she

called the Christmas before it

happened but I was too busy with

nothing and couldn’t answer,

I was distracted with the

lights, lights, lights of the

decorated tree that symbolized the

charity I left in the sugar-free

maple syrup she poured on

my pancakes and she

asked me if I wanted more

and cleaned my sticky lips.

Now her lips are wet

with drool, her eyes are

dull and dark, staring above her,

and all she can say is

“Lights, lights, lights…”