Why do we have stars above?
-Scarlett Li & Jane Jin
This project was carried out in a small hospital, Bucktail Hospital, located in a town called Renovo, Pennsylvania.
This site represents a stolen peek into the elders’ daily activities.
-“ Jim doesn’t remember his room....
He will go out of his room for a walk and
forget his room number”
-“ And this helps him remember? What is this?”
-” A dot he drew, somehow he remembers”
-” What if one day he forgets that he drew
-” . . . . . . ”
That dot was Jim. He drew himself
In a little while from now
if I am not feeling any less sour
to think that it is only yesterday
we sat by the fire
but instead of looking straight at me
he was staring at the fire
with a gentle smile on his tanned face
I watched him so sadly
because he never sees me
And I had loved him so gladly
All by myself
“ Though you’re past your baby days Still you’ve got those baby ways ”
Today is a pink day for a pink lady
She wears a knitted pink sweater
How I wish people would see things in her color
Schedule of the day
This is not a kindergarten
Maybe we will have the same next Friday
Can you play me a memory
I’m not really sure how it goes
But it’s sad and it’s sweet
And I knew it complete
When I wore a younger man’s clothes
(Piano man- Billy Joel)
I can’t hear you
here is grand
here is silent
if you want to listen closely
The sound of my thoughts
talking against each other cheerfully
How are you?
How (old) are you?
How are you?
(old) is what I’ve heard
life as a cycle
and we love again
-Why do we have stars above?
The people who were photographed and recorded for this project are elders from the Bucktail Hospital in Renovo, PA. The hospital has served the people in this area for decades, and the community has seen this place as something more than just a health institution. It is also the only source of the medical help within 30 miles.
However, in the spring of 2016, this hospital was in danger of being shut down because of a state budget crisis and federal funding shortages. Removing the hospital from this area will devastate the community because of job loss and hardships for family members who will have to travel to visit their relatives. The people in Renovo are always concerned about the danger of losing this facility and living without a hospital, and they have shared their opinions very vocally.
Scarlett Li and I, Jane Jin, decided take on this project to raise awareness of this situation. We show the elders’ peaceful daily lives. The staff in the hospital have devoted their time and enegry to make them feel at home, they also know their patients and their family situations. We wish to honestly present media images of love, peace and our genuine feelings about the lives that we encountered at Bucktail Hospital.
Special thanks to: Margaret Palmer who currently works at the front desk of the hospital, Harriet Nuss of the administration board who offered us an in-depth interview about the hospital budget problems and history, and Alene Burrows, who allowed us to film her with Harriet Nuss.