Rough and Smooth
Rough and Smooth
Rough and Smooth
Rough and Smooth
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  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Rough and Smooth
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Rough and Smooth

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Letter accompanying this piece:
Parkinson's Disease: Study in contrasts

With Parkinson's Disease, tremors can occur when opposing muscle groups are locked in opposition - paired extension and flexion muscles fire simultaneously without the usual dopamine regulation to trigger one to work and the other to yield.  The result is the distinctive Parkinson's quiver; opposites don't always attract.

This piece is part of a set of three works commissioned by Parkinson Canada, that look at paired opposites.  Each piece focuses on challenges or symptoms in the Parkinson experience

Rough and Smooth
Rough are the movements, with spasms and braces
Smooth as the skin on expressionless faces
Rough is the treatment by those who don't know.
Smooth is the swaying, and involuntary flow
Rough is the sleep as new stresses takeover
Smooth are the sheets that help to roll over

Order and Disorder
Order required to track all medication
Disorder of focus, memory, attention
Orders of magnitude used to chart muscle stiffness
Disorder on file, questioning mental fitness

Hard and Soft
Soft are skills lost to inactivity
Hard are the muscles that are gripped by rigidity
Soft are the voices, both in volume and timing
Hard are the choices to be made while declining
Soft are the finances suddenly in peril
Hard are the buttons that dot my apparel
Soft are the hands that give care when needed
Hard's the resolve that won't be defeated

These descriptions intend  to conjure images of the realities faced by many people with Parkinson's Disease, particularly those who have become disconnected.  But as a Board Member with Parkinson's Canada, you sought to connect the disconnected, educate the confused, and enrich the lives of those who just needed a place to go for answers or companionship. In doing so, you are part of an organization that helped to shape a new reality for countless Canadians. For your part, a community owes you gratitude.