In the Nursing Home

The power of rewriting our stories

In this submission, Elizabeth “Like” Lokon engages with Jane Kenyon’s poem, “In the Nursing Home,” by adding a stanza of her own to the end. Lokon works at the intersection of art, education, and dementia care, and she regularly takes students to nursing homes. In the midst of the poem’s themes of aging, death, and acceptance, she found herself reflecting on the need for supportive relationships at the end of life and thought, “Let’s find her a friend.” The video includes Like’s ending. And Jane Kenyon’s original poem (unaltered) is below.

In the Nursing Home

Reflect and Practice

This submission picks up a reflective technique of entering into dialogue with a poem by adding a stanza of one’s own at the end. “You can use whatever poem,” Lokon says. “And it’s a useful technique for engaging discussion, rather than simply altering the poem’s aesthetic or message.”

Here is the additional stanza she wrote in response to “In the Nursing Home”:
And find her a friend
Who needs to know
What lies beyond the hill pasture

How might you use this technique of bringing your experiences into conversation with poetry as a practice of writing our own stories?

Offer your responses and see those of others’ below:



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Produced by Elizabeth “Like” Lokon
Videography by Ian McCue
Presented by On Being & CoGenerate