Five Poems for Mid life

Source

A Year of Being Here
 Kerrie Hardie

I used to wait for the flowers,
my pleasure reposed on them.
Now I like plants before they get to the blossom.
Leafy ones—foxgloves, comfrey, delphiniums—
fleshy tiers of strong leaves pushing up
into air grown daily lighter and more sheened
with bright dust like the eyeshadow
that tall young woman in the bookshop wears,
its shimmer and crumble on her white lids.
The washing sways on the line, the sparrows pull
at the heaps of drying weeds that I’ve left around.
Perhaps this is middle age. Untidy, unfinished,
knowing there’ll never be time now to finish,
liking the plants—their strong lives—
not caring about flowers, sitting in weeds
to write things down, look at things,
watching the sway of shirts on the line,
the cloth filtering light.
I know more or less
how to live through my life now.
But I want to know how to live what’s left
with my eyes open and my hands open;
I want to stand at the door in the rain
listening, sniffing, gaping.
Fearful and joyous,
like an idiot before God.

>
Salt and Pepper
>
Here and there

White hairs appear
On my chest—
Age seasons me
Gives me zest—
I am a sage
In the making

Sprinkled, shaking

>
An Old Woman

 Arun Kolaktar 

She wants a fifty paise coin.
She says she will take you
to the horseshoe shrine.

You’ve seen it already.
She hobbles along anyway
and tightens her grip on your shirt.

She won’t let you go.
You know how old women are.
They stick to you like a burr.

You turn around and face her
with an air of finality.
You want to end the farce.

When you hear her say,
‘What else can an old woman do
on hills as wretched as these?’

You look right at the sky.
Clear through the bullet holes
she has for her eyes.

And as you look on
the cracks that begin around her eyes
spread beyond her skin.

And the hills crack.
And the temples crack.
And the sky falls

with a plateglass clatter
around the shatter proof crone
who stands alone.

And you are reduced
to so much small change
in her hand.

>

Carpe  Diem
Stewart Conn

From my study window

a wayward shoot;

a daub of powder-blue in a
profusion of green,
then next moment, you are
no longer there –
only to reappear, this time
perfectly framed

in dappling sunlight, with
an armful of ivy
you’ve trimmed, topped by
hyacinth blooms,
fragrant survivors of last
night’s frost.

And my heart misses a beat
at love for you,
knowing a time will come
when you are
no longer there, nor I here
to watch you

on a day of such simplicity.
Meantime let us
make sure we clasp each
shared moment
in cupped hands, like water
we dare not spill.

a wayward shoot;

a daub of powder-blue in a
profusion of green,
then next moment, you are
no longer there –
only to reappear, this time
perfectly framed

in dappling sunlight, with
an armful of ivy
you’ve trimmed, topped by
hyacinth blooms,
fragrant survivors of last
night’s frost.

And my heart misses a beat
at love for you,
knowing a time will come
when you are
no longer there, nor I here
to watch you

on a day of such simplicity.
Meantime let us
make sure we clasp each
shared moment
in cupped hands, like water
we dare not spill.

a wayward shoot;

a daub of powder-blue in a
profusion of green,
then next moment, you are
no longer there –
only to reappear, this time
perfectly framed

in dappling sunlight, with
an armful of ivy
you’ve trimmed, topped by
hyacinth blooms,
fragrant survivors of last
night’s frost.

And my heart misses a beat
at love for you,
knowing a time will come
when you are
no longer there, nor I here
to watch you

on a day of such simplicity.
Meantime let us
make sure we clasp each
shared moment
in cupped hands, like water
we dare not spill.

a wayward shoot;

a daub of powder-blue in a
profusion of green,
then next moment, you are
no longer there –
only to reappear, this time
perfectly framed

in dappling sunlight, with
an armful of ivy
you’ve trimmed, topped by
hyacinth blooms,
fragrant survivors of last
night’s frost.

And my heart misses a beat
at love for you,
knowing a time will come
when you are
no longer there, nor I here
to watch you

on a day of such simplicity.
Meantime let us
make sure we clasp each
shared moment
in cupped hands, like water
we dare not spill.

>
 Mid-Life
Suzy Kopliku

 

A liminal space,

a barefoot ground,

luminal,

burning bark gold shroud,

 

remaking a way, a clearing, a glade,

unraveling the raw, the un-hemmed, the frayed

leaf dreams, bare as winter sky

and full with weeping

sunlight.

 

Husk

caskets sway

low as chariots aflame.

 

Make space

for something more

or less.

 

Simple as a plain shift dress,

a clear dawn sky

and starlight.

 

Though starlight fades

come day.

All defined lines erase

to a plume of dust

to a breeze

in the fall.

 

Old layers peel,

old masks flake,

bark, calloused as shell fragments, breaks.

Lichen grows like fur in furrows.

Silent deer lap slow green streams.

Stems bend with currents.

 

Hard edges erode, become soft

as loam

and all is worn down

to the jewel inside the stone.

 

Bare bones,

driftwood,

sea-washed,

wind blown,

 

 

un-staked,

up rooted,

 

alone,

 

I am an owl moving

through sifting sands of silence.

Chaff abandons clay baked grain.

 

A womb of clear darkness quakes.

 

My own dance, dances now in the dapple

of Autumn,

bough heavy with storm and ripe with fruit,

 

a howl,

 

a sound

not of the wilderness nor

the well ordered rooms

I walk between

because I walk between

everything now.

 

I am a paper chain of people

a concertina,

folded, unfolding,

 

a single note, strung into a chord.

 

“Moments “burn with lifetimes,”

 

days aflame,

the spaces between

all things grow green with rain,

 

and nothing is lost

and nothing

remains.

 

Quoted text inspired by

The Four Quartets

by T.S Elliot.

“As we grow older

The world becomes stranger, the pattern more complicated
Of dead and living. Not the intense moment
Isolated, with no before and after,
But a lifetime burning in every moment
And not the lifetime of one man only
But of old stones that cannot be deciphered.
[…] In my end is my beginning”

>

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s