Cyril sits at Hatty’s Pantry

Chats to shoppers and their mums

Exchanging weathered pleasantries

Sipping tea ‘til the PC comes

For Cyril – allowed out to roam –

Cannot find his way back home

Apologises for being batty

Comforted by kindly Hatty

Smart in blazer and cravat

Neat-pressed trousers, Panama hat,

Neat-trimmed fingernails and hair

No doubt helped to dress with care

No wallet or bus-pass, just some keys

Fairly sure they must be his

But can’t recall what doors they unlock

Quite complete the memory block

Recalls a wife - but not her name

Perhaps it was with her he came?

To visit or perhaps to dwell?

Cyril sadly cannot tell

Dementia plays a cruel game

Strips you of a loved one’s name

Strips each page from memory’s tome

Strips you of the pathway home

Strips your past and present too

But cannot strip the inner you

For though his memory’s in absentia

Cyril’s kindly in dementia

Still he “Thank-you’s” and he “Pleases”

Blesses Hatty when she sneezes

Stripped of memories (for good or ill)

Confused, befuddled, but a gentleman still

Police enquiry – digital trace -

Soon locates a dwelling place

PC says, “Hop in the passenger seat!

A chauffeur home! Now there’s a treat!”

Hatty’s pleased the puzzle’s ended

Declares with irony unintended,

“Bye bye, Cyril – for the tea no cost -

You know where to come next time you’re lost.”


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