My father lost his English three times. Once, he reverted to his mother language when he was very ill in intensive care while visiting Germany, but his English returned as he recovered. However he lost it twice more before he died in Dunedin Hospital ten years later.
Dad grew up in Denmark and lived in New Zealand for his last fifty years. His enjoyment of words, languages and bilingual jokes is an important part of how I remember him. It’s not surprising therefore, that the issue of language emerged when I wrote a series of poems about my parents.