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----- Original Message -----
From: Phillip J. Hardt <Phil_Hardt@email.msn.com>
To: Huntington's Disease Discussion <HUNT-DIS@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU>
Sent: Thursday, October 07, 1999 10:21 PM
Subject: HD poem
Hello again everyone. Here's a poem I wrote in
California about a month
ago. I had left my wife for the third time in about a month my wife made
stay with my sister and sort things out- while she decided if she wanted
take me back or not. I left for another woman who was helping with out
handicapped children in the home. I would have never done this type of
behavior in my life, until about last January. It may sound strange but
don't have any feelings of guilt or remorse either. This, of course, is
very hard for my wife to understand. We're trying to work through things
now but there are still good and bad days since she still has all of her
feelings intact. As Paul Harvey would say- now you have the "rest of the
THEN & NOW
I used to have a wonderful life,
Filled with eight kids, a home, and a beautiful wife.
I used to drive to work each day,
Now I can't drive, or work, or sometimes even play.
I used to have no problem remembering the smallest thing,
Now I can't remember where I put my wedding ring.
I used to not question who I loved and why,
Then another came along who really caught my eye.
I used to get paid to make tough, timely decisions,
Now I vacillate between whom I love most, almost to derision.
The Mayo doctor said: "You have no more social inhibitions."
This only added to my many other frustrations.
I used to be true and faithful for 24 years,
Now an adulterer I've become without any tears.
I used to shepherd a flock of mine,
Now I've left the ninety and nine.
I used to help others heal wounds caused by life,
Now I inflict emotional scars on my precious wife.
I used to cry when I would hurt someone,
Now my emotions aren't there- where have they gone?
I used to follow instructions and rules precisely,
Now I stumble and fall without acting wisely.
I used to cry often when I felt the Spirit,
Now that I'm on Prozac I can't even hear It.
I used to be eloquent in expressing my feelings,
Now ugly words escape me oft, new inner self revealing?
I used to shun gambling because the odds weren't nifty,
Now I've given my own biological children fifty-fifty.
I used to have children, who treated me with respect,
Now they will never trust me again as they spurn with neglect.
I used to be steady and unshakeable to the end,
Now my body quakes as tics and twitches and jerks descend.
The guilt, the remorse, the undying feeling of love,
Where have they gone? Have I been forgotten above?
My family all cries that they want the "old" me back,
If only I could remember where he went-- it used to be a snap!
You may ask, what has changed so much between now and then?
It's the dreaded disease called Huntington's.
Phil Hardt 1999
My wife responded with her feelings when she picked
me up at the Greyhound
bus station. This shows her anguish over what I had just done to her.
I USED TO KNOW
I used to know that every love song was for us.
I used to know that your lips were mine alone.
I used to know that our time together would never end,
our love was eternal.
I used to know that every surprise was from you to me.
I used to know that your dreams were of me only.
I used to know that we would fight every battle together,
I used to know that every touch was true and cherished.
I used to know that your words would comfort me.
I used to know that our love was stronger than any storm,
power or person.
I used to know.
Laura Hardt 1999