Tag Archives: age

Closing Time: rime couée

Down at the bar we sit and wait,
as if our glory days, so great,
still might return anon.
We act younger throughout the night,
so we forget, while we get tight,
that halcyon is gone.

And all the girls who tend the bar,
pretend to laugh, but just so far;
it’s hard to hide pity.
Last call, they turn on all the lights;
watch us shuffle into the night,
mumbling something witty.

1 MAY 2017

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Two weeks

In two weeks I’ll be fifty.
Where has that half century gone?
It feels the world is speeding by
this jockey on the lawn,
who used to hold the reins
and feel some semblance of control
but now just stands there deaf and dumb
while time, relentless, rolls.

I sometimes sit and wonder:
have I really done so much,
or are my past misdeeds and triumphs
really just a crutch?
Illusions of effectiveness and use
appear and fade,
while I and my small banner
watch an infinite parade.

In two weeks I’ll be fifty,
an age I never thought
or bargained I would ever see;
It’s taken quite a lot
of road and oil and rust and dirt
to get here in one piece.
One thing I know for certain:
that the traveling’s not cheap.

When I am most reflective, though,
it seems more finding out
along the way, which song to sing
and welcoming the doubt:
that we are more important
than even we want to believe,
and it’s a wasted life
if you’re just hanging ’round to leave.

19 DEC 2014

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Your backstage ghost

For forty years, I’ve sung and played;
each bar, garage or concert stage
has its own ghosts, its private songs.
They do not share them all.

Some of these venues are long gone,
while others stand with different names;
those that remain all show their age.
We all get older, year by year.

The players, too, have come and gone
to better gigs or greener lawns;
sometimes, I hear of their success
and wonder if they think of me.

In forty years, I’ve found that songs
evolve or die. To stay the same
means fade away, and is not love;
I’m missing Buddy Holly now,

and many more I’ve never met
except perchance as lingering shades
who hang backstage, behind the lights
and sometimes, hum along.

05 APR 2013

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The fainter stars

I wonder if the fainter stars,
those not more distant but less bright,
their fuel perhaps reduced by age,
the entropy that comes with time,
feel they burn just as brightly now
as once they ever did.

Do they, confined to shrinking space,
expend their last remaining years
reflecting inward, on the past,
where once they outshone all for miles
and lit even the darkest skies
with brilliant rays and fervent heat?

If so, that may provide a clue:
why old stars fade with memory
and seem to slip away in shame,
neglected as both power source
and lesson for the young white dwarfs
who do not yet know of the dark.

I wonder, when the light grows dim
and will not give much warmth or glow –
for older fuel is often best.
Green wood is wet behind the ears
and fails to catch without some aid,
while dry and brittle kindling needs
the slightest spark to raise a pyre.

So sad if those much fainter stars,
those not more distant but less bright,
their fuel perhaps reduced by age,
the entropy that comes with time,
feel they need not burn just as bright
as once they ever did.

03 APR 2013

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