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Poems about Growing Old

PHJim 28 Jan 21 - 12:03 AM
Donuel 27 Jan 21 - 08:19 PM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 25 Jan 21 - 06:11 AM
PHJim 25 Jan 21 - 01:36 AM
Georgiansilver 24 Jan 21 - 03:55 PM
Georgiansilver 24 Jan 21 - 03:54 PM
GUEST,# 24 Jan 21 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,Roderick A. Warner 24 Jan 21 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Roderick A Warner 24 Jan 21 - 01:16 PM
GUEST, Jim Bainbridge 24 Jan 21 - 12:24 PM
Felipa 24 Jan 21 - 10:19 AM
Mrrzy 24 Jan 21 - 09:14 AM
Cattia 24 Jan 21 - 08:58 AM
GUEST,MikeOfNorthumbria (sans cookie) 24 Mar 16 - 09:13 AM
kendall 23 Mar 16 - 07:37 PM
Joe_F 23 Mar 16 - 05:59 PM
kendall 23 Mar 16 - 02:23 PM
GUEST,Ebor Fiddler 22 Mar 16 - 09:05 PM
Stewie 22 Mar 16 - 08:27 PM
GUEST,Dave 22 Mar 16 - 03:29 PM
MGM·Lion 22 Mar 16 - 12:06 PM
MGM·Lion 22 Mar 16 - 12:04 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 22 Mar 16 - 07:24 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 22 Mar 16 - 07:00 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 22 Mar 16 - 06:50 AM
Sir Roger de Beverley 22 Mar 16 - 05:48 AM
Ged Fox 22 Mar 16 - 05:39 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 21 Mar 16 - 06:25 PM
MGM·Lion 21 Mar 16 - 05:10 PM
MGM·Lion 21 Mar 16 - 05:02 PM
MGM·Lion 21 Mar 16 - 04:53 PM
kendall 21 Mar 16 - 04:39 PM
MGM·Lion 21 Mar 16 - 04:20 AM
Bert 20 Mar 16 - 10:56 PM
Stewie 20 Mar 16 - 08:46 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 20 Mar 16 - 04:35 PM
kendall 20 Mar 16 - 04:12 PM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 16 - 04:33 PM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 16 - 11:08 AM
henryclem 05 Jan 10 - 11:47 AM
Dave Roberts 04 Jan 10 - 05:37 PM
Georgiansilver 04 Jan 10 - 05:12 PM
Suegorgeous 04 Jan 10 - 05:10 PM
Little Robyn 04 Jan 10 - 02:57 PM
Charley Noble 04 Jan 10 - 09:07 AM
MGM·Lion 03 Jan 10 - 11:22 PM
katlaughing 03 Jan 10 - 11:11 PM
Joe_F 03 Jan 10 - 06:14 PM
Young Buchan 03 Jan 10 - 04:57 PM
Dave Roberts 03 Jan 10 - 04:49 PM
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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: PHJim
Date: 28 Jan 21 - 12:03 AM

An Old Man's Advice - Vance Gilbert

You ask an old man's advice Son
Well, here's a reasonable place to start
Never pass a bathroom chance
And never trust a fart
Never look for Friday's kiss
With Thursday's broken heart
Pay attention, Son, it's all about love

See the nurses treat me kindly here
As long as I behave
Though I've got on hand on my walker
And one foot in the grave
But I've got this sliver of memory
And with these cataract-covered eyes
I can see this much, it's all about love

So you'd better go romance her
Before she hauls off and flies to France, sir
Or up and dies of cancer
And it's no longer your choice to make

You see, we're living in a world
That just don't give a damn
They'd just as soon kill each other
For being different sons of Abraham
So go set a good example Boy
Common sense is on the lam
Pay attention Son, it's all about love.

So you'd better go romance her
Before she hauls off and flies to France, sir
Or up and dies of cancer
And it's no longer your choice to make

'Cause before you leave this planet
You're bound to get your feelings hurt
They'll misspell your name in granite
When they conscript you to the dirt
So don't let her get away boy
Give a little tug on her skirt
When it comes down to it, it's all about love.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Donuel
Date: 27 Jan 21 - 08:19 PM

“The ultimate horizon”

Please, remember me
Happily
By the passion flower vine laughing
With bruises on my chin
The time when
We counted every black car passing
By my house beneath the hill
And up until
Someone caught cold that wasn't a cold
With a cough, and fever,
A hospital
A vision too removed to mention
But


Please, remember me
Fondly
I heard from someone you’re still living
And then
They went on to say
That the pearly gates
Had some eloquent graffiti
Like ‘We’ll meet again’
And ‘Fuck the Trump’
And ‘Tell my mother not to worry’
And angels with their grey
Handshakes
Were always done with such abandon
And

Please, remember me
At Halloween
Making fools of all the neighbors
Our faces painted white
By midnight
We’d forgotten one another
And when the morning came
I was ashamed
Only now it seems so silly
That season left the world
And then returned
And now we’re fed up by the city
So

Please, remember me
Mistakenly
In the window of the internet and kitchen
Then pass us by
But much too high
To see the empty roads at early hours
Leave notes of wisdom not read
Just like the gates
Around holy places
With words like ‘Beats underground’ and ‘Don’t Look Down’
And ‘Someone Save Temptation’
And

Please, remember me
As in a dream
We were all raised like forest babies
Among the fallen trees
And fast asleep
Aside the weeds now taller than trees
That fell silently
Losing all their height
Gave a gift for tommorrow
In an empty canopy so new life cries
A new idea
That swings as high as any savior
But

Please, remember me
My misery
And how it cost pecious time
Those friends that love the rain
And chasing trains
The colored birds above, flying
In circles round the well
And where it spells
On the wall behind St. Peter’s
So bright with cinder gray
in spray paint
‘Who the hell can see forever?’
And

Please, remember me
Frequently
In the car waiting for others to finish
My hand between my knees
I was only free to dream
And said I am the unknown poet
But never meant to last’
The clowns that passed
Made me come up with anger
DC was filled with circus dogs
Filling parking lots
It had an element of danger
So

Please, remember me
Finally
And all my uphill musing
now sleds down the hill
But if I make
The pearly gates
I did my best to make a painting
Of evil and good
A boy and girl
An angel kissing a devil
A monkey and a man
An orchestra and choir
Filling the Earth
,an auditorium,
with old familiar songs.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 25 Jan 21 - 06:11 AM

On an unusually cheerful note for the topic, from another great Scottish poet on Burns' night.
3 verses and this chorus...

Ye never need yer nookie when ye're ninety
Ye're rarely randy when ye're eighty-three
While young men they take fits
Chasin' legs and bums and tits
Ye're really quite ecstatic wi' yer cup o' tea
No ye never need yer nookie when ye're ninety
And the freedom from the hassle it's like heaven
For ye're no' obliged tae weemin when ye're no' producin' semen
Aye yer life's yer own when you reach eighty-seven....

from the late lamented John Eaglesham of Glasgow

(verses available on another thread)


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: PHJim
Date: 25 Jan 21 - 01:36 AM

When You And I Were Young    Johnson & Butterfield

I wander'd today to the hill Maggie
To watch the scene below
The creek and the rusty old mill Maggie
Where we walked in the long, long ago.
The green grass is gone from the hill Maggie,
Where once the wild daisies sprung
The rusty old mill now is still Maggie
Since you and I were young

They say I am feeble with age Maggie
I step not as spritely as then
My face is a well a well written page Maggie
And time alone was the pen
They say we are aged and gray, Maggie,
As spray by the wild breakers flung
To me you're as fair as you were Maggie
When you and I were young



This poem was written by George Johnson of Mount Hope, Ontario (now a part of Hamilton) for his wife Maggie. James Butterfield later put it to music, but Maggie Johnson never got to hear it as a song nor to grow old with George as she died of consumption while still a young woman.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 03:55 PM

I would suggest it passes as a poem.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 03:54 PM

One of my favourite songs about old age is this one.... Silver threads amongst the gold. This version by the Fureys.   https://youtu.be/xdl3pKSNQhk


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,#
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 01:54 PM

I don't think anyone has mentioned WS's 'Sonnet 73.'


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,Roderick A. Warner
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 01:38 PM

— “Chemo du Jour: The Impeachment on Decadron,” from Chemo Sábe
...as the drip is connected to the pump I see W. J. Clinton... / I see him in the Taxol pooling over my brow / move his arky hand from the arm rest / to the Iraqi button... / an experimental / missile vibrates and flames and then launches / from the carrier, and Oh Good Lord, minutes later, / as the nurse strips away the Medusan tubes of my oncology, / American dumb missile arrives with punity /in the southern suburbs of Baghdad, ruined Cradle of Civilization, / just north of the Garden of Eden... / And Lo now the Taxol infusion clears the atmosphere / where I see the Superbowl completely superseded / by the superblow, O yes, praise the Tree Lord, / now it is time to go.

An extract from ‘Chemo Sábe,’ by the late and great Edward Dorn, being treated for cancer at the time, defiant and going out on his own terms...


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,Roderick A Warner
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 01:16 PM

Alone with our madness and favorite flower
We see that there really is nothing left to write about.
Or rather, it is necessary to write about the same old things
In the same way, repeating the same things over and over
For love to continue and be gradually different.

Beehives and ants have to be re-examined eternally
And the color of the day put in
Hundreds of times and varied from summer to winter
For it to get slowed down to the pace of an authentic
Saraband and huddle there, alive and resting.

Only then can the chronic inattention
Of our lives drape itself around us, conciliatory
And with one eye on those long tan plush shadows
That speak so deeply into our unprepared knowledge
Of ourselves, the talking engines of our day.

John Ashbery


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST, Jim Bainbridge
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 12:24 PM

Hello Cattia,
                the lines you mention are about his failure to 'keep up' with the woman in the sexual act- the 'tail-tree' mentioned earlier in that verse gives the clue? For her two movements he only has one-


Burns was well versed in this activity as you'll know, but as he died in his thirties, he shouldn't have suffered this problem really, and I doubt if he did!


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Felipa
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 10:19 AM

"My Old Man", Roseanne Cash https://mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=4156

Ewan MacColl "The Joy of Living"

Dylan Thomas - "Do not go gentle" - I wonder would it suit being set to a tune for singing https://poets.org/poem/do-not-go-gentle-good-night

Toby Keith "Don't Let the Old Man In" (you can find recordings on youtube; I heard it on the radio sung by Willie Nelson)

Don't let the old man in, I wanna leave this alone
Can't leave it up to him, he's knocking on my door
And I knew all of my life, that someday it would end
Get up and go outside, don't let the old man in

Many moons I have lived
My body's weathered and worn
Ask yourself how would you be
If you didn't know the day you were born

Try to love on your wife
And stay close to your friends
Toast each sundown with wine
Don't let the old man in

Many moons I have lived
My body's weathered and worn
Ask yourself how would you be
If you didn't know the day you were born

When he rides up on his horse
And you feel that cold bitter wind
Look out your window and smile
Don't let the old man in

Look out your window and smile
Don't let the old man in


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Mrrzy
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 09:14 AM

What about my youth is all spent?


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Cattia
Date: 24 Jan 21 - 08:58 AM

Please help me! with John Anderson, my jo, John
I don't understand the line
"I've twa gae-ups for ae gae-doon"
What's the meanings?
my post in Terre Celtiche Blog is https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/john-anderson-my-jo/

I hope to have translated all the song in the wright way
Grazie mille


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,MikeOfNorthumbria (sans cookie)
Date: 24 Mar 16 - 09:13 AM

Some great stuff here - thanks to all the contributors.

And here's one of my favourites which seems to have escaped notice so far.

Jenny kiss'd me when we met
Jumping from the chair she sat in.
Time, you thief, who love to get
Sweets into your book, put that in!

Say I'm weary, say I'm sad,
Say that health and wealth have miss'd me,
Say I'm growing old, but add,
Jenny kiss'd me.

By Leigh Hunt (1784-1859)

Wassail!


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: kendall
Date: 23 Mar 16 - 07:37 PM

Come, fill the cup, and in the fire of spring,
The winter garment of repentance fling:The bird of time has but a little way to fly,
and, Lo, the bird is on the wing.

from the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. One of the most treasured books I own.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Joe_F
Date: 23 Mar 16 - 05:59 PM

There is also good old Prufrock:

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.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: kendall
Date: 23 Mar 16 - 02:23 PM

MGM Lion, right you are. same song. I thought my friend, Carl Eklund wrote it, although he never said he did.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,Ebor Fiddler
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 09:05 PM

Has anybody mentioned Browning's splendid "Rabbi Ben Ezra"?


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Stewie
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 08:27 PM

Another good song about an old woman is 'Maria Consuelo Arroyo'.

Maria

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 03:29 PM

There are a few other Sydney Carter ones, including Run the Film Backwards, and Silver in the Stubble (though this one ends up being about refusing to grow old).


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 12:06 PM

Sorry -- Leadfingers had already posted it back in 2010.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 12:04 PM

Unless I unaccountably missed it above, nobody has mentioned Jenny Joseph's classic, "When I am an old woman I shall wear purple"

http://www.barbados.org/poetry/wheniam.htm

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 07:24 AM

.
The Death of the Hired Man


BY- Robert Frost
1915


MARY sat musing on the lamp-flame at the table        
Waiting for Warren. When she heard his step,        
She ran on tip-toe down the darkened passage        
To meet him in the doorway with the news        
And put him on his guard. "Silas is back."              
She pushed him outward with her through the door        
And shut it after her. "Be kind," she said.        
She took the market things from Warren's arms        
And set them on the porch, then drew him down        
To sit beside her on the wooden steps.              

"When was I ever anything but kind to him?        
But I'll not have the fellow back," he said.        
"I told him so last haying, didn't I?        
'If he left then,' I said, 'that ended it.'        
What good is he? Who else will harbour him              
At his age for the little he can do?        
What help he is there's no depending on.        
Off he goes always when I need him most.        
'He thinks he ought to earn a little pay,        
Enough at least to buy tobacco with,              
So he won't have to beg and be beholden.'        
'All right,' I say, 'I can't afford to pay        
Any fixed wages, though I wish I could.'        
'Someone else can.' 'Then someone else will have to.'        
I shouldn't mind his bettering himself              
If that was what it was. You can be certain,        
When he begins like that, there's someone at him        
Trying to coax him off with pocket-money,—        
In haying time, when any help is scarce.        
In winter he comes back to us. I'm done."              

"Sh! not so loud: he'll hear you," Mary said.        

"I want him to: he'll have to soon or late."        

"He's worn out. He's asleep beside the stove.        
When I came up from Rowe's I found him here,        
Huddled against the barn-door fast asleep,              
A miserable sight, and frightening, too—        
You needn't smile—I didn't recognise him—        
I wasn't looking for him—and he's changed.        
Wait till you see."        

"Where did you say he'd been?"              

"He didn't say. I dragged him to the house,        
And gave him tea and tried to make him smoke.        
I tried to make him talk about his travels.        
Nothing would do: he just kept nodding off."        

"What did he say? Did he say anything?"              

"But little."        

"Anything? Mary, confess        
He said he'd come to ditch the meadow for me."        

"Warren!"        

"But did he? I just want to know."              

"Of course he did. What would you have him say?        
Surely you wouldn't grudge the poor old man        
Some humble way to save his self-respect.        
He added, if you really care to know,        
He meant to clear the upper pasture, too.              
That sounds like something you have heard before?        
Warren, I wish you could have heard the way        
He jumbled everything. I stopped to look        
Two or three times—he made me feel so queer—        
To see if he was talking in his sleep.              
He ran on Harold Wilson—you remember—        
The boy you had in haying four years since.        
He's finished school, and teaching in his college.        
Silas declares you'll have to get him back.        
He says they two will make a team for work:              
Between them they will lay this farm as smooth!        
The way he mixed that in with other things.        
He thinks young Wilson a likely lad, though daft        
On education—you know how they fought        
All through July under the blazing sun,              
Silas up on the cart to build the load,        
Harold along beside to pitch it on."        

"Yes, I took care to keep well out of earshot."        

"Well, those days trouble Silas like a dream.        
You wouldn't think they would. How some things linger!              
Harold's young college boy's assurance piqued him.        
After so many years he still keeps finding        
Good arguments he sees he might have used.        
I sympathise. I know just how it feels        
To think of the right thing to say too late.              
Harold's associated in his mind with Latin.        
He asked me what I thought of Harold's saying        
He studied Latin like the violin        
Because he liked it—that an argument!        
He said he couldn't make the boy believe              
He could find water with a hazel prong—        
Which showed how much good school had ever done him.        
He wanted to go over that. But most of all        
He thinks if he could have another chance        
To teach him how to build a load of hay——"              

"I know, that's Silas' one accomplishment.        
He bundles every forkful in its place,        
And tags and numbers it for future reference,        
So he can find and easily dislodge it        
In the unloading. Silas does that well.              
He takes it out in bunches like big birds' nests.        
You never see him standing on the hay        
He's trying to lift, straining to lift himself."        

"He thinks if he could teach him that, he'd be        
Some good perhaps to someone in the world.              
He hates to see a boy the fool of books.        
Poor Silas, so concerned for other folk,        
And nothing to look backward to with pride,        
And nothing to look forward to with hope,        
So now and never any different."              

Part of a moon was falling down the west,        
Dragging the whole sky with it to the hills.        
Its light poured softly in her lap. She saw        
And spread her apron to it. She put out her hand        
Among the harp-like morning-glory strings,              
Taut with the dew from garden bed to eaves,        
As if she played unheard the tenderness        
That wrought on him beside her in the night.        
"Warren," she said, "he has come home to die:        
You needn't be afraid he'll leave you this time."              

"Home," he mocked gently.        

"Yes, what else but home?        
It all depends on what you mean by home.        
Of course he's nothing to us, any more        
Than was the hound that came a stranger to us              
Out of the woods, worn out upon the trail."        

"Home is the place where, when you have to go there,        
They have to take you in."        

"I should have called it        
Something you somehow haven't to deserve."              

Warren leaned out and took a step or two,        
Picked up a little stick, and brought it back        
And broke it in his hand and tossed it by.        
"Silas has better claim on us you think        
Than on his brother? Thirteen little miles              
As the road winds would bring him to his door.        
Silas has walked that far no doubt to-day.        
Why didn't he go there? His brother's rich,        
A somebody—director in the bank."        

"He never told us that."              

"We know it though."        

"I think his brother ought to help, of course.        
I'll see to that if there is need. He ought of right        
To take him in, and might be willing to—        
He may be better than appearances.              
But have some pity on Silas. Do you think        
If he'd had any pride in claiming kin        
Or anything he looked for from his brother,        
He'd keep so still about him all this time?"        

"I wonder what's between them."              

"I can tell you.        
Silas is what he is—we wouldn't mind him—        
But just the kind that kinsfolk can't abide.        
He never did a thing so very bad.        
He don't know why he isn't quite as good              
As anyone. He won't be made ashamed        
To please his brother, worthless though he is."        

"I can't think Si ever hurt anyone."        

"No, but he hurt my heart the way he lay        
And rolled his old head on that sharp-edged chair-back.              
He wouldn't let me put him on the lounge.        
You must go in and see what you can do.        
I made the bed up for him there to-night.        
You'll be surprised at him—how much he's broken.        
His working days are done; I'm sure of it."              

"I'd not be in a hurry to say that."        

"I haven't been. Go, look, see for yourself.        
But, Warren, please remember how it is:        
He's come to help you ditch the meadow.        
He has a plan. You mustn't laugh at him.              
He may not speak of it, and then he may.        
I'll sit and see if that small sailing cloud        
Will hit or miss the moon."        

It hit the moon.        
Then there were three there, making a dim row,              
The moon, the little silver cloud, and she.        

Warren returned—too soon, it seemed to her,        
Slipped to her side, caught up her hand and waited.        

"Warren," she questioned.        

"Dead," was all he answered.              


Sincerly
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 07:00 AM

You are old, Father William

(1865)
By - Lewis Carroll


"You are old, Father William," the young man said,
"And your hair has become very white;
And yet you incessantly stand on your head –
Do you think, at your age, it is right?"

"In my youth," Father William replied to his son,
"I feared it might injure the brain;
But, now that I'm perfectly sure I have none,
Why, I do it again and again."

"You are old," said the youth, "as I mentioned before,
And have grown most uncommonly fat;
Yet you turned a back-somersault in at the door –
Pray, what is the reason of that?"

"In my youth," said the sage, as he shook his grey locks,
"I kept all my limbs very supple
By the use of this ointment – one shilling the box –
Allow me to sell you a couple?"

"You are old," said the youth, "and your jaws are too weak
For anything tougher than suet;
Yet you finished the goose, with the bones and the beak –
Pray, how did you manage to do it?"

"In my youth," said his father, "I took to the law,
And argued each case with my wife;
And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,
Has lasted the rest of my life."

"You are old," said the youth, "one would hardly suppose
That your eye was as steady as ever;
Yet you balanced an eel on the end of your nose –
What made you so awfully clever?"

"I have answered three questions, and that is enough,"
Said his father; "don't give yourself airs!
Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?
Be off, or I'll kick you downstairs!"


Sincerely,
Gargoyle

The two poems were in John Ciardi' s delightful book, How Does A Poem Mean?"


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 06:50 AM

The Old Man's Complaints. And how he gained them
BY ROBERT SOUTHEY

You are old, Father William, the young man cried,
    The few locks which are left you are grey;
You are hale, Father William, a hearty old man,
    Now tell me the reason I pray.

In the days of my youth, Father William replied,
    I remember'd that youth would fly fast,
And abused not my health and my vigour at first
    That I never might need them at last.

You are old, Father William, the young man cried,
    And pleasures with youth pass away,
And yet you lament not the days that are gone,
    Now tell me the reason I pray.

In the days of my youth, Father William replied,
    I remember'd that youth could not last;
I thought of the future whatever I did,
    That I never might grieve for the past.

You are old, Father William, the young man cried,
    And life must be hastening away;
You are chearful, and love to converse upon death!
    Now tell me the reason I pray.

I am chearful, young man, Father William replied,
    Let the cause thy attention engage;
In the days of my youth I remember'd my God!
    And He hath not forgotten my age. –1843

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Sir Roger de Beverley
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 05:48 AM

Try this song by Pete Ivatts:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nZHP6Yrjy7s

R


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Ged Fox
Date: 22 Mar 16 - 05:39 AM

Robert W. Service.

"Sow your wild oats in your youth," so we're always told;
But I say with deeper sooth: "Sow them when you're old."
I'll be wise till I'm about seventy or so:
Then, by Gad! I'll blossom out as an ancient beau.

I'll assume a dashing air, laugh with loud Ha! ha! . . .
How my grandchildren will stare at their grandpapa!
Their perfection aureoled I will scandalize:
Won't I be a hoary old sinner in their eyes!

Watch me, how I'll learn to chaff barmaids in a bar;
Scotches daily, gaily quaff, puff a fierce cigar.
I will haunt the Tango teas, at the stage-door stand;
Wait for Dolly Dimpleknees, bouquet in my hand.

Then at seventy I'll take flutters at roulette;
While at eighty hope I'll make good at poker yet;
And in fashionable togs to the races go,
Gayest of the gay old dogs, ninety years or so.

"Sow your wild oats while you're young," that's what you are told;
Don't believe the foolish tongue - sow 'em when you're old.
Till you're threescore years and ten, take my humble tip,
Sow your nice tame oats and then . . . Hi, boys! Let 'er rip.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 06:25 PM

Having, this past week, demonstrated to an eight year old....a "three point head stand"...the poem, spoof "You Are Old Father William" surged through my brain.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

I am sure I will never do it again


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 05:10 PM

Who was the friend, Kendall? -- Becoz it sounds suspiciously like the same song: Sydney's starts "There's no fun at all for a mixed-up old man"...


Songs of Sydney Carter: In the present tense, Book 2‎ #12
Text:        MIXED UP OLD MAN

12. MIXED UP OLD MAN
Text Information
First Line:         Oh there's no fun at all for a mixed-up old man
Title:         MIXED UP OLD MAN
Publication Date:         1969
Copyright:         © 1962 Sydney Bron Music Co. Reprinted with permission.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 05:02 PM

... starts at 12.13.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 04:53 PM

It's a track on this record --

"Sydney Carter and Sheila Hancock - Putting Out The Dustbin"

which will be found online at

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ll0kGKBbp9o

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: kendall
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 04:39 PM

MGM, wanna share that one? I sounds ike one that a friend of mine wrote about 50 years ago called "There's not fun at all for a mixed up old man


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 21 Mar 16 - 04:20 AM

Another good poem about growing old is Sydney Carter's "It isn't much fun for a mixed-up old man", sung to the 𝄞♫"Villikins/Sweet·Betsy"♩ tune.

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Bert
Date: 20 Mar 16 - 10:56 PM

'Taint a poem but...




Your browser does not support the audio element. Your browser does not support the audio element.         


Mid Life Crisis


A D                                     A
I wanna have a mid life crisis
       D                      A
but if the truth be told
   D                                  A
I can't have a mid life crisis
                                  E7          A
'Cos My Wife says I'm too old

I wanna drive a bright red sports car
with a pretty young blond for a date
I wanna have a mid life crisis
but My Wife says I'm too late

She said you coulda had a crisis at Forty
or even at Fifty Five
If you'd wanted a mid life crisis
You should have done it while you're still alive


A               D                              A
I want a pick up truck with monster wheels
                D                               A
I want to be stacked up with sex appeal
I want tatoos on my arms and chest
A Harley and a black leather vest
I want to let my hair grow long
I want to get to Nashville with this song
I want a Cowboy hat and belt and boots
I want a hand tailored white silk suit

I wanna have a mid life crisis
but if the truth be told
I can't have a mid life crisis
'Cos My Wife says I'm too old

I wanna drive a bright red sports car
with a pretty young blond for a date
I wanna have a mid life crisis
but My Wife says I'm too late



http://bertsongs.com/grownups.html
Mid life Crisis.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Stewie
Date: 20 Mar 16 - 08:46 PM

I note that some songs have been included in this thread. Utah Phillips' 'All used up' is a good'un.

There is also this song which I found the Yetties Songbook edited by Tony Wales. Wales had this note: 'This beautiful song was written by Pete Mundey of The Broadside. One day he heard an old lady say "If my old man didn't wind up me clock at least once a week, I'd know there was summit wrong". He thought this was a great theme for a song so here it is, a gentle reminder that love needn't "grow old and wax cold" as the years roll on and take their toll of youth, beauty and marital bliss'.

Take Your Time
(Pete Mundey)

You first wound me clock up on our wedding day
You said t'would always be striking
Though the spring's getting weaker and feeble the tick
It's still very much to me liking.

Chorus:
So take your time, me lovely old lad,
There ain't no reason to hurry
For as long as you're able to wind up me clock
Then I have no need for to worry

I mind the times when we were young
You worked at the hedging and dyking
You'd go out at dawn and work through till the dusk
And come home for me clock to be striking

As time went by, our children grew up
Were soon taking wedding vows binding
And I told all me daughters the one thing I'd learned
Make sure your clocks often need winding

And now that we're nearing the end of our time
And you are so tired and grey, love
Oh it still pleases me when you wind up me clock
And it will to the end of my days, love

--Stewie


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 20 Mar 16 - 04:35 PM

Simon and Garfunkle (1968)


"Bookends"

Time it was
And what a time it was, it was
A time of innocence
A time of confidences

Long ago it must be
I have a photograph
Preserve your memories
They're all that's left you.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

I find myself trapped in the corner, the corner I accused so many of taking...I am growing old.


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Subject: Lyr Add: USED UP OLD MAN
From: kendall
Date: 20 Mar 16 - 04:12 PM

Here's one that crept up on me. It could be a song of course. Tune of Betsy from Pike.

USED UP OLD MAN

There's no hope at all for a used up old man
And the older I get the more used up I am
But friends and relations all scoff when I say
"It's too many birthdays that made me this way"

It all started back there when I lost my voice
That was the end of my touring, of course
Now I'm losing the hearing in my left ear
And, finally, arthritis is too much to bear.

The first thing I lost was my ability to sing
I got so depressed about this whole thing
It was a rough fall and a hard row to hoe
To end up sounding like an aging tame crow.

But the thing I miss most from my lost former glory
Are the dearest of friends who carried my story
Our good times together on this earth are done
Their bodies now gone, but our souls ever one

But this story won't end on a note of sad loss
You'll be tempted to think I've been hitting the sauce.
Most parts are still working, I'm still of good cheer
There'll be no complaining 'cause hey, I'm still here!


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 16 - 04:33 PM

... & just found this one on my computer -- I wrote it fairly recently but had forgotten all about it. Bit doggerel really; but seems to me quite a good question at that

Lines at fourscore'n'three

When am I
Going to die?
Who can know
When I'll go?


Michael Grosvenor Myer
    8 October 2015


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 16 - 11:08 AM

The following, which I wrote after my first wife's suicide due to her increasing degeneration thru Parkinson's disease, being one of those situations to which old people are frequently subject, might perhaps fit into this thread which came back into my mind thru some train of thought:-

POST-PARKINSONIAN

Trying to keep going

In the teeth
0f the lethal
Mix of grief
And relief



Michael Grosvenor Myer

       15℔ May 2008


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: henryclem
Date: 05 Jan 10 - 11:47 AM

You can hear my song "Toys in the Attic" on Myspace -
http://myspace.com/henryclements

Phil Hare did a beautiful version of this on his 2003 album "Broken Timing" which brings out the poetry far better than I manage!

So many fine contributions to this thread, though!

Henry


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 05:37 PM

Charley,

That's a great poem (Mariquita).

And, without (I hope) starting to become tiresome, this one reminds me of Rudyard Kipling.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 05:12 PM

"When I'm 64"
"Silver Threads amongst the Gold"


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 05:10 PM

Awwww thanks Kat... :) glad you liked it.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Little Robyn
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 02:57 PM

Pete Seeger's Old Devil Time
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 09:07 AM

I can't resist posting one C. Fox Smith poem here about an old sailor reminiscing:

Poem by C. Fox Smith, FULL SAIL, pp. 108-110 © 1926

MARIQUITA

Old man Time, 'e's wrote his log up in the wrinkles on my brow,
And there ain't that much about me as a girl 'ud take to now;
For I've changed beyond all knowing from the chap I used to be,
When I can remember Mariquita, as was mighty fond o' me!

I can shut my eyes and see it just as plain as yesterday,
See the harbour and the mountains and the shipping in the bay,
And the town as looked like heaven to us shellbacks fresh from sea
And I can remember Mariquita, as thought a deal o' me!

I can hear the chiming mule-bells, and a stave o' Spanish song,
And the blessed old guitarros as kep' tinkling all night long;
Hear the dusty palm trees stirring, taste the vino flat and sour,
And I can remember Mariquita, and her white skirts like a flower.

But it's years now since I've seen her, if she's died I never knew,
Or got old and fat and ugly, same as Dagoes mostly do;
And it's maybe better that way, for there's nothing left but change,
And the ships I knew all going, and the ports I knew grown strange,
And the chaps I knew all altered, like the chap I used to be,
But I can remember Mariquita, and she's always young for me.

I've adapted this poem for singing, changing some words and adding a couple of lines; here's a link to how I sing it: Click here for lyrics and MP3!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 11:22 PM

Akenaton - Don't worry: see my reply to Dave above. Come back from the Arctic snows!

Suegorgeous - thank you; & on Valerie's behalf also.

Michael


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 11:11 PM

Suegorgeous, that is wonderful. I LOVE the way it reads so well out loud. That's always my test of my own writing...does it work well out loud...yours really scans well. Thanks.


Speaking of poetry lovers, some may enjoy Mudcat Poetry Corner.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Joe_F
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 06:14 PM

CharleyNoble: The original, I presume, is The Good Boy, which also has its charms.


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Young Buchan
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 04:57 PM

This is Alistair Claire's Old Man's Song. It doesn't seem to be on DT but I've pasted it over from an old thread on the car industry (Sorry Joe O. but I can't do clickies)


When I was young and married my wife
You couldn't get a job to save your life;
With my wife and son at either hand
For two long years I travelled the land:
And I reckon I've served my time.

My shoes were out. My coat was torn.
And then we had our daughter born.
But I found this job and I earned our bread,
Clothes for our back, a roof for our heads:
And I reckon I've served my time.

They were cut-throat years - you were fighting your mate
With another man waiting for your job at the gate.
If the foreman didn't like your face that day
You got no work,you got no pay:
And I reckon I've served my time.

Then we joined the Union and learned to strike.
It was six hard weeks but we won that fight.
Work to our hands and a worthwhile wage _
We were waking up a golden age:
And I reckon I've served my time.

But the young men now they dress so fine;
They don't know how we fought for this line.
They're getting too young to know my face;
And their work comes to me at the Devil's pace.
And I reckon I've served my time.


There is also Banks of the Dee. That IS in the DT but there are several. You want the one that starts 'Last Saturday night on the Banks of the Dee/I met an old man in distress I could see.'


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Subject: RE: Poems about Growing Old
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 04:49 PM

Akenaton,

No problem.

It's very nice to come across people who appreciate fine poetry.


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