Poetry Tuesday #1 – Old

The subject today is “Old” – an eventuality I considered at length in my chapbook “On Turning Fifty” – there’s something about a milestone birthday that makes you want to stop, look right, left and right again, before going forward. Today’s poem, however, comes from a divergent thought about reality, about time and by extension, all things existential.

One more bean

The line from me to myself arches across the southern
sky, plummeting through a cloud of stardust, or maybe it

scours the bottom of the ocean, dragged up, wet and
heavy: either way, both lines pause at the threshold of

this argument? On one side, worn, wrinkled fingers shell
hyacinth beans, dropping them into a wire basket —

79, 80, 81… the toothless smile is capitulation and
resigned acceptance. The beans will be skinned and

cooked in powdered spices at dawn. On the other side
is the moon, watching with one eye. Languishing. She

too will be peeled and colourless once the kitchen fires
are lit. See how both parties offer their transience in self-

defence. One more bean. One more hour. One more
meaningless night. As if time is just a farcical construct, a

peg on which to hang our last excuse for being here. As
if every clock face is a pulsing confession of age old guilt.

 

Do share your poems, exploring any aspect of the prompt(age, history, evolution, geology, childhood, yesterday, nostalgia, rust, wisdom – whatever it means to you), using the Mister Linky widget, or leave the link in the comments section below. Even if you don’t have a poem to share, stop and say hello! Next Tuesday’s prompt (12th November) will be “New“!

 

 

Still a Weed

there she was, reading a Murakami,
the light arranging itself carefully around her young
shoulders, iced tea sweating, waiting for no one,
expecting no one, no phone, no ring,
just a fragment of consciousness filling the now,

I let the years run through my hands like grain,
knowing I had seen too much, seen nothing,
and somehow they were both the same,
you see, a weed that survives the storm
is still a weed, maybe there were warnings, little wind chimes
that repeated requiems in every breeze, but I wasn’t listening,
not until I had heard too much, or heard nothing, and
both began to sound the same, all this time,
as if we have been walking too far, too much,
always reaching a fork, always taking different paths,
still walking together, walking apart,

I can see her, the draft from the air conditioner
pulling her hair, shifting slightly as she turns a page,
she reads slowly, I say to myself, trying to forget,
a book that survives that pace is not the same book,
as though I remember everything, remember
nothing and somehow here, alone, reading together,
reading apart, both feel exactly the same.