Queen of the Mountain

Do you have a recliner or a favorite armchair? Don’t you just love sinking into it at the end of a long, hard day with a book, newspaper, or TV remote control and a cup of coffee or other beverage?

My late husband Bill loved his recliner. Because of his paralysis due to his strokes, it was necessary to purchase one that could lift him almost to a standing position so I could more easily transfer him to his wheelchair. One day after I got him settled, he said, “I’m the king of the mountain.”

This inspired the following poem from How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver. The original title was “King of the Mountain,” but that didn’t seem to fit so I changed it.

RECUMBENT

With his good hand, he presses a button.

The chair reclines.

Familiar objects are within reach,

telephone, radio, drink,

cassette player, bag of nuts, TV remote control.

As I cover him with poncho and blanket,

his sightless eyes gaze at me with love.

He smiles, content.

I still have Bill’s recliner. I’m sure there are others who need such a chair more than I do, especially since I don’t even use the lift feature. There may come a day, though, when I’ll need it so I guess I’ll keep it. In the meantime, I’m now the queen of the mountain. What familiar objects comfort you?

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver