We haven’t always got along…the neighbor down the street and me

When it comes to yard work…eye to eye…we don’t always see.


Oh ours is but a minor disagreement…a tiny tiff I must admit…

He likes the leaves raked up by a certain time…I like to wait a bit.


So over the many years we’ve lived as neighbors…we wave and exchange smiles

but he never waves as often when the leaves begins to pile.


I was standing outside looking at the fallen leaves when he came by the other day…

We hadn’t spoken in a while but I was pretty sure what he was going to say.


As he sluggishly approached me…I knew it wouldn’t take him long

to tell me it was time to rake…but I couldn’t have been more wrong.  


He asked me who I was and how long I’ve lived in this neighborhood.

When I noticed the far away look in his eyes I immediately understood.


He said he loves his house, he loves this street…as he introduced himself to me

He said it’s just a horrible thing to lose your memory…


He said some days he forgets his name…some days his wife’s name too

He said he’s lived in this neighborhood a long time…he’s not sure what he’s going to do.


He said he still remembers bits and pieces…sometimes into his mind they spring…

He said his biggest fear is someday…he’ll have forgotten everything…


But for now he said he likes to walk….to stroll his street…his neighborhood…and then

with a big smile on his face…he introduced himself again.


As he casually walked on down the street..I couldn’t help feeling sad…

Sad for what he’s going through…sad for those little spats we’ve had.


As I saw him turn the corner there was a feeling I couldn’t help shaking

so I got my rake from out our shed and immediately started raking,


I wanted to be ready… if on his return trip…bits and pieces he retrieves


and he suddenly remembers…that it’s time for raking leaves.

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