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The Persistence of Memory

by Juliane McAdam

Picture of a record player sitting on a table next to a window with flowers in a vase next to it.
Image credit: Emma Frances Logan on Unsplash

From the inane (“Be my, be my baby”) to the

poetic (“All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray”)

to the apocalyptic (“We’re on the eve of destruction”),

the lyrics and melodies are part of

her neural circuitry.

Song lyrics burned into her

hormone-fueled teenage brain,

hours spent on school buses with

Top 40 Radio, school dances, slumber parties,

45s and LPs played until the grooves wore down.

Now, fifty years later,

she still remembers all the lyrics, can

sing along with all the songs.

Music is, after all, the most effective

therapy for dementia patients.


Black and white photo of the author, Juliane McAdam.
Juliane McAdam

Juliane McAdam is a California native who grew up in the stark beauty of the Mojave Desert. She spent the last 27 years of a 40-year teaching career teaching English and Spanish to middle school students in Los Angeles, writing poems with them. Now retired and living near Morro Bay on California’s beautiful Central Coast, she enjoys walks, playing piano, and writing poems to record observations and memories.

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