Saturday, July 30, 2011

POETRY JAM - ON AGING


 So this week's JAM is a well-aged jam.  A little less appetizing than a well-aged wine.  And we are in daunting company:



 "It little profits that an idle king,
By this still hearth, among these barren crags,
Matched with an aged wife, I mete and dole
Unequal laws unto a savage race,
That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me."
                              Alfred Lord Tennyson

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"I grow old… I grow old…
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.

Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.

I do not think that they will sing to me."

                           T.S. Eliot
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"When I get older losing my hair,
Many years from now,
Will you still be sending me a valentine
Birthday greetings bottle of wine?"
                           The Beatles   
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"Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

                                         Dylan Thomas
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Okay!  Enough fun quoting favorite old age poems.   Since my poetry style of choice if free verse, my submission will be in a formal rhyme which is outside of my comfort zone.  But then again, at 65 years-old just about everything is outside my comfort zone.  In fact, I'm not sure I can remember what my comfort zone is.  Anyhow - here is my submission for the week:

Sonnet for Methuselah

I do not measure years by counting birthday cakes.
At this point years do not reflect my age.
I measure age by counting pills I take
and names I know upon the obit page.

They say old age is not for faint of heart
unless accompanied by faint of mind.
(Now I can't remember the next part
except I think that it's suppose to rhyme.)

My body sags, the waist line grows
to eat a peach, I still will dare,
but worry now about my bladder flows
and D.C. boobs who cut my Medicare.

Do not go gently into that good night.
At least Viagra keeps one thing a'right.


Okay - that was fun.  Now I'm going back to bed if I can still remember where the bedroom is.


P.S.   While I was putting this together, my subconscious started singing to me again.  Unfortunately, I cannot shake the Billy Joel song, "We didn't light the fire," which I started plagerizing a few weeks ago.  And this week's geezer theme set it off again.  Unable to stop it, the following encore poem fragment came out. You really need to sing it out loud to get the full effect.  I drove my wife out of the house with my rendition.

 
Wellbutrin, Benicar, Zoloft brings me back to par,
Centrum Silver, Synthroid, fish oil in a childproof jar
Metamucil, Lipitor, Advil when the muscle's sore
Where is Jack Kevorkian, I can't take it anymore!

I didn't start the fire
but it's in the tummy and the feeling's crummy
I didn't start the fire
though I didn't start it, I'm too tired to fight it.



















12 comments:

  1. I love your poem. I had a hard time going for rhyme without going silly, so I dropped it, but went somewhat silly with this topic anyway.

    Thanks for your words and for the words of others.

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  2. Anyone who quotes Dylan Thomas is a friend for life (a friend of mine composed music to that poem). As usual--charming poetry and clever lyrics!! Crazy brilliant.

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  3. Thanks for sharing the other poems....

    As to your post, I hope I will still be healthy and young at heart (I still do). As we are in Canada, I don't worry much about the health care side. But great take on the rhyme (I struggle with this form myself).

    Happy sunday~

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  4. Bloody marvelous selection, whether of your words or others! Thanks for the laugh! :)

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  5. one of your best posts, I enjoy Butler and Bagman, but like and admire Mark completely.

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  6. I read every post and comment occasionally, Mark. I loved this post and have to say that I think you're extremely talented.

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  7. The Boomer's Poet Laureate!

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  8. Not as stunning nor as poetic, and even sometimes blatantly ugly, there's a site called Advanced Style :)

    http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/

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  9. Love love love this! I'm going to share it with my dad. He's a bit of a ham (he's part of a singing group that sings in nursing homes) so he might try singing the "light the fire" verse. We can only hope there'll be video evidence if he does :)

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  10. This was fun, from top to bottom. I'm glad you tackled rhyme, and a sonnet at that... a geriatric form for geriatric content.

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  11. Retired?! At age 65? Not according to Congress, you aren't. Get off your arse and find a job, young man. ; )

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