Wednesday, January 31, 2018

A Note From the Edge of the World




It is late afternoon
on the edge of the edge of the world.
Grey skies and raindrops
play timpani on the budding tulips,
and a pink-headed hummingbird
darts at the feeder,
grateful for sustenance.
As am I. As am I.

There was hail yesterday,
frozen pellets fired from heaven.
I passed laughing villagers,
coats held up over our heads,
as the streets grew white.

Where have all the years gone
and why have all the cherished people
from those days
changed so,
as if I am a different person to them
now that I am old
than I was when I was young
and laughing and strong.
As if they no longer know who I am.

I spend my days and nights
and years
alone,
with no dog,
but the song of the sea
is my comfort.
At twilight, I stand at my open door
and listen
for whatever it wants
to tell me.




33 comments:

  1. This is a wonderful poem. I was having conversation yesterday about aging . The scales drop from your eyes and you are faced with the often umpleasant reality and truth about people and life. That is why wisdom is usually reached in old age because it is just too confronting for the young. The upside is, that mental health and even physical health can remain in good nick, grappling with struggle, which is the point of our lives...being challenged.
    Also you may be alone now but it is not impossible you may make a connection with a like minded soulin the future. I say this because when for years when you were hankering to return to the sea again....quite frankly ( even though I don't know your circumstances) I could not see how that could ever be possible. Well...it happened and so can anything else. Your poems bring comfort to people and that makes you an important person.

    ReplyDelete
  2. As we grow "old", it happens. There is plenty to "you", Sherry, to keep an "old person" company. Loved your write. I'm glad to see the "words" have found you again.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you, my friends, for reading, and for caring.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Where have all the years gone
    and why have all the cherished people
    from those days
    changed so,
    as if I am a different person to them
    now that I am old
    than I was when I was young
    and laughing and strong.
    As if they no longer know who I am.

    oh how you've gripped me from the start of this piece - the depth of emotions, the grief, the pain and yet the hope in light, love - and the observations, the careful noting of the smallest of details ....

    - grateful for sustenance.
    As am I. As am I. -

    I read this, as all of your poems, and I am grateful ... and sustained ....

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is just exquisite work, Sherry.

    ReplyDelete
  6. The older I get the larger my collection of wondrous spirits like you there are in my life. No matter how long between visits, it's always like coming home. Peace my friend...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thank you all for your lovely words. They mean so much.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sustenance, laughter, the song of the sea ... and even memories. Long may they nurture us!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Ah,it is sad when one finds that the people one knew at earlier times have changed. Or perhaps they are the same people they always were, but only took what you could offer and now that you perhaps cannot offer quite as much their reality shows more strongly. The truth of it though is that we are born alone and we die alone. Connections along the way are icing on the cake, and I know you have had many good connections along the way, Sherry. I can only hope there will be more & authentic ones where friendship and caring is reciprocal. And oh, I wish so strongly, that you COULD have another dog. It just isn't fair sometimes. Keep writing your poetry, Sherry. You are a friend to many & appreciated for who you are.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I see you surrounded by spirits from the animals, land and people you love--both alive and dead--and wonder that sometimes you don't feel too crowded! But I know that physical presence and familiarity are key, sigh. I feel solitude as less than a choice at times. And even those old brown leather shoes get crusty and harden with age--maybe they even shrink a little. I know change is the greatest truth. Maybe we like writing because the poems retain shape and form and content, though it might be great if they matured too. This is a poem to treasure.

    ReplyDelete
  11. How I love this flow of words that go straight into the heart telling one to live in spite of everything!

    ReplyDelete
  12. This is so beautiful, Sherry!❤️ The song of the sea can be quite comforting at times.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Such moving opening lines, Sherry:
    'It is late afternoon
    on the edge of the edge of the world.
    Grey skies and raindrops
    play timpani on the budding tulips'.
    I also wonder:
    'Where have all the years gone
    and why have all the cherished people
    from those days
    changed so,
    as if I am a different person to them
    now that I am old'.
    The final lines are poignant - the sea as a friend.

    ReplyDelete
  14. What is sad is that we have learned so much, loved so much, yet now we cannot use that knowledge gained but just watch others, and listen to the winds sad song. What an outstanding poem this is Sherry...a real tear jerker.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love how you interweave the images of the world with the rain and hail with the contemplation of aging... why is it that we always get lonelier and lonelier... it should be possible to get new friends when the old one's are leaving... but it seems to be so hard... still there are many years for me, but I can see how hard it is to get new friends...

    ReplyDelete
  16. Looking at the rain and the hail and the villagers and contemplating one's own life... beautifully done.

    ReplyDelete
  17. i loved the whole poem, especially the ending lines. we will never be alone, we have the songs.

    ReplyDelete
  18. The speaker knows who she is, even if others do not. And the speaker has a voice, a comforting voice, to which to listen--the sea--when human voices refuse to speak to her. This is a lovely poem about aging, filled with sorrow, but triumphant in the end.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Oh but you're not alone, Sherry! You are strong and resilient and can find comfort in nature, poetry, lovely memories, and great friends. The ones who care stick around. With age comes wisdom and a new appreciation of life and all living things. 😊

    ReplyDelete
  20. Happy you have such an unfailing companion filled with ocean songs and all

    Have a lovely Sunday Sherry

    much love...

    ReplyDelete
  21. A hauntingly beautiful poem about aging and the realities that come with it my friend. I often wonder what happened to people to change them so....but life happened and we are all but passing through each others lives as we evolve and others do not we must leave them behind.

    ReplyDelete
  22. This is such a touching poem, especially because I can relate to it. I hadn't thought much about the fact that people seem to see me differently now. Recently, prior to prescribing me a medication, the doctor said, "Remember you're 71 not 21." He has no clue how hard that is to remember.
    You capture the feelings and ruminations of aging so well here. I loved this poem.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Thank goodness for Nature, and the way in which she stays herself as she continues to chance. Many of us would feel so lost and alone without the company she offers.

    ReplyDelete
  24. This is pure magic. Incredible writing, Sherry.

    A huge WOW here:

    "Grey skies and raindrops
    play timpani on the budding tulips,
    and a pink-headed hummingbird
    darts at the feeder,
    grateful for sustenance.
    As am I. As am I."

    Love the closing too:

    "the song of the sea
    is my comfort.
    At twilight, I stand at my open door
    and listen
    for whatever it wants
    to tell me."

    ReplyDelete
  25. Do not, do not, stop listening...your heart will play its melody : )
    ZQ

    ReplyDelete
  26. I think we all change a bit in the journey, I think some just have a different perspective and will learn when they too become older.

    Always remember to stand at the door and let it tell you whatever it is...you are a wonderful soul who will hear the messages that whisper within.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I love this. I love the mix of playfulness with reflections on aging. Are we old children?

    ReplyDelete
  28. Ah....I love this and you my dear will be forever young. Xox

    ReplyDelete
  29. I so related to this. So much seems to change as we age: for us and our relationships. At least you have nature near ... and I know what a solace that is for you, Sherry. Aging in a big city, is a special kind of hell. One really has to work at ferreting out a bit of serenity ... so much noise ... so little personal space - and not a lot of it green ... but worst of all: so many old people - looking so alone and sad.

    ReplyDelete
  30. The third stanza really ties it all together. And that last line is powerful. Powerfully subtle - if that makes sense.

    ReplyDelete
  31. At twilight, I stand at my open door
    and listen for whatever it wants
    to tell me.

    A similar situation for the lighthouse keepers and others in such lonely jobs meant only for certain strong-willed people! Many others would not survive!

    Hank

    ReplyDelete

I so appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.
Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!