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Pectoriloquy |

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Anne Carroll Fowler, PhD, MDiv
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Editor’s Note: “I wrote this poem to memorialize my mother’s ­introduction to her first great-grandchild, and the only one she lived to see. Mother was suffering from dementia; I doubt she’d ever been in a bowling alley in her life.” The Reverend Anne ­Carroll Fowler is an Episcopal priest and rector of St. John’s Church in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (http://www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2011 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2011;139(3):717. doi:10.1378/chest.10-0393
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Amelia’s a hit with all Mother’s nurses.
First great-grandchild? She’s adorable!
But Mother’s skeptical. She clings tight
to her stuffed owl, a comfort in this
strange company. – Too bad about
the deformity, she announces. What
is she thinking? What baby, in what decade?
– Grandma, her name’s Amelia, Liz says
firmly, want to hold her? No, she does not,
she has her hands full with this bird. – Look
I tell her, four generations of family
women all together! Mother sits up
straighter in her hospital bed. – That baby’s
head is very round, she says. I think she’ll
be a bowler, a very good one.


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