|This piece, like many of the villanelles I have written, is a way for me to document Mum’s recollection of her life, and to keep her love close. The phrases used in this villanelle are drawn from a conversation I had with her on 8th August, 2019 when I asked her to remember a time when she was worried that she didn’t have enough money. Mum immediately began talking about her childhood dreams of gaining an education to become a nurse or a teacher, the reality of needing to leave high school early to help support her family, and the joy of earning enough money to buy a nice pair of stockings. The photos of Mum are from the Barlow family album; the picture of the red laminated table is borrowed from a Red Formica online vintage store; and, the final photograph of Mum standing on Flinders Lane is one that I imagined from the details she shared through the creative assistance of canva. The writing of Australian poet-editor-critic Sarah Holland-Batt also sat very close as I wrote this villanelle – in particular Sarah’s 2023 Stella Award winning collection of poetry, The Jaguar, a “deeply humane portrait of a father’s Parkinson’s Disease, and a daughter forged by grief“. In Fishing for Lightning: The Spark of Writing Poetry (2021), Sarah notes that villanelles are one of the “trickiest forms to get right…and maligned for frequently producing bad poems” largely because of their complicated structure. With this warning-as-lamentation in mind, I am inspired to keep trying to write villanelles – they are the perfect form for me to turn over and over (perhas a little obsessively) my relationship with Mum, the experience of memory loss illness as a daughter who adores her, and the ways in which we might remember, love in writing.