Category Archives: Aging

Dark Thoughts

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Dark Thoughts

At four in the morning, the old cat begins her morning crabby  high-pitched “wahhhhrrr.” The wind picks up and I go to pee. Open my laptop and with its very first light, a tiny beetle flies to the screen to wander back and forth, in search of what? Company or bugs even more miniscule? And where has it been in the interim? In what obscure corner of my world has it been waiting for light, like the old cat, barely able to restrain itself , seeking my company at my first sign of stirring?

Does the rest of the world wait for me like this, or is it death lurking in the shadows, waiting for its time? Has life slowed down to this one long communal waiting? My sick friend has left but leaves behind her some of her dejection. I cannot shake it. Return to it after each short departure into the world. I feel an eternity of the ills of the world around me. Optimist rebel in an enemy camp all my life, I now feel myself sinking into the ordinary world. My mood refuses to shift with the sunrise. Even the old cat, still unfed, leaves me alone to my dark mood.

I fear the power of sleep, not wanting to return to that half-remembered dream I woke from. Fear this new self I seem to be becoming. Suddenly, I fear eternity—feel it not my friend.

Prompt words today are camp, rebel, eternity.

Rope


Rope

They’ve dispelled my excitement with a coiled line of rope—
imprisoning my fantasies and murdering that hope
that fairies really do exist with dragons and magicians.
Using scientific words and proofs of the tacticians,
they’ve put the rope around the neck of childhood and jerked
and I admit the strategy of reason really worked!
I don’t believe in Santa Claus. I don’t believe in fables.
They’ve ruined Cinderella and lynched Anne of Green Gables.
Pure reason is my only friend now that they’ve slain the rest.
They’ve installed stark reality but murdered all the zest.
I’ll welcome second childhood when silliness again
replaces stark reality to cushion the world’s pain.

 

Prompt words for today are line, dispel and rope.
The dVerse Poets prompt is to write a quadrille (44 words only) making use of the word dragon.

Retirement?

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Retirement?

My future is amorphous. It has no shape or plan.
Up the creek without a paddle, I have no job or man.
My freedom? It is ludicrous. I’m well out of the chase.
All my time is leisure time. I live a slower pace.
Who named this phase re-tirement? There’s nothing that is tiring.
If they want to tire me out again, they’d best replace my wiring.

 

Prompt words today are chase, ludicrous, amorphous and paddle.

Memory Care

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Memory Care

I’m tumbling backwards into silence.
My words have lost their spark.
When I seek enlightenment,
I’m only met by dark.

When I try to pick a theme, 
my thoughts quickly retreat.
Looking for a place to rest,
they rarely find a seat.

Where do memories go to 
when they cannot find a door—
when there’s no exit for them, 
and there’s no room for more?

Does our memory simply melt
starting with today
so the things that we remember
are only yesterday?

Do we wander empty corridors
or is our distant past
our favorite thing to think about
so they’re the thoughts that last?

 

I’ve been thinking a lot about dementia lately, but no, I don’t feel I’m describing myself in this poem. I am, however, trying to put myself in my sister Betty’s place to try to figure out what might be going through her mind…or what in her mind she might be going through. Certainly, we all have enough memories stored to entertain ourselves for life, and perhaps as we run out of room it is the last memories, more seldom thought of, that vanish first, leaving us with a rich inner world we are loath to leave. I hope this is true, or that we go back to a state of consciousness similar to where an infant exists before it is born, listening to the mystery of outside sounds and wondering where we are going to fit into them. Without words, are there thoughts? Unfortunately, not all mysteries are solved.

Prompts today were spark, pick, silence and backward. Here are links:
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/05/28/rdp-tuesday-spark/
https://fivedotoh.com/2019/05/28/fowc-with-fandango-pick/
https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/05/28/your-daily-word-prompt-silence-may-28-2019/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/05/28/backward/

Incantation for the Rainy Season

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Incantation for the Rainy Season

I admit I’m taking sanctuary, waiting for the rain.
I really cannot help it that I’m foolish and I’m vain.
It’s lack of all humidity causing my hibernation.
This dryness is my scapegoat. I am needing rain’s hydration.

Once there’s water in the air, my cavities will out,
and all these ugly wrinkles are destined to fill out.
I’m praying to the rain gods, though I don’t like to beg,
for the wrinkles on my torso are spreading to my leg.

My hand backs are so furrowed they’re impervious to lotions.
My crepey neck defies even my most expensive potions.
I’m succumbing to my wrinkles. I’ve barely a smooth patch.
I think I’d be the winner in a “most wrinkled” match.

In the aging Olympics, I would surely win the gold.
I’ve passed from young to middle-aged and ended up at “old.”
I’ve given up on vagueness and modesty and pride.
I’m bluntly revealing the condition of my hide.

Yes, I’ve succumbed to wrinkles. and my only hope’s the rain.
Surely with humidity, I’ll plump right up again!!!!

 

Prompts today are regenerate, scapegoat, vague and sanctuary. Here are their links:
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/rdp-thursday-regenerate/
https://fivedotoh.com/2019/05/23/fowc-with-fandango-scapegoat/
https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/your-daily-word-prompt-vague-may-23-2019/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/sanctuary/

Facing the Inevitable. Alone.

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Facing the Inevitable. Alone.

Tilting at windmills or slaying dragons is too retro for my taste. I’d rather just have a man who tickles my funny bone, or at the very least one who tickles my fancy. At my age, I am between vulnerable stages. I don’t need anyone to save me financially or ego-wise. I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to house and feed myself for the twenty or so years I have left and unless I have a serious decline in mental and physical power, I will always have blogging to salve my ego–a few loyal followers who still want to hear what I have to say.

Whatever I have made of my life, it is a pickle of my own choosing. I have not been jinxed or done ill to—at least recently. What I have I deserve. What I don’t have, I deserve. I don’t look forward to that day when fate will serve me a bitter dish, but that part of me that has to binge-watch *”After Life” or listen to an Audible book to get to sleep at night knows it one day will. In spite of my niggling lifelong conviction that I’ve been left on this planet by some foreign species and that I’ll be picked up soon and whisked off to a life unending, that part of me that needs constant distraction knows that I am human and therefore vulnerable.

Those with partners may think my title here sad, but there is another way of looking at it. Those of us unmatched and “unespoused” have only one inevitable death to face. We need fear no phone call when parted or unwelcome discovery when together. The only death we need fear is our own.  We have half of the dread that the happily paired must face as they approach a certain age.

With increasing regularity, when with friends my own age, after we have hurriedly (I hope) gone over the ills of today—knee replacements and hip replacements and intestinal disorders and the ilk—we eventually get around to discussing various methods of insuring the end we desire over Alzheimer’s or stroke. I have a high bridge picked out. Various friends have pill stashes. Everyone knows which friends, in spite of their obituaries, have already made this choice.

What we fear most is waiting too long and forfeiting the choice and spending the rest of our days in some repository for the walking dead—those antiseptic storehouses where they partition off residents unlucky enough to have not experienced a swift death—those cursed either with an active mind trapped in a body turned to stone or the reverse. What living hell is this, that so many of the aged are now preserved in part who in an earlier age would have been afforded a dignified death?

There is something about writing to multiple prompts that takes us into a part of our brain where otherwise we might have not gone. So it is with this seemingly pessimistic rambling into the dark side of my brain. Although nothing I say is fiction, still, perhaps the balance is wrong. Here is no discussion of the birds outside my early-morning sunlit curtains or the components of my morning smoothie that await my hand in compiling them. It does not mention friends that still stimulate and amuse, relatives that still fill my heart.

It overlooks those twenty potential years that I hope will lead up to whatever end I face. These are just words that I shed during a side trip through consciousness. Do not call me or consult with mutual friends, worrying about my state of mind. I am in no way suicidal. I am not morose. I am simply wandering through a few alleys where I think we must all wander from time to time, and as we grow older, where we wander more frequently. For in spite of my title, I don’t really think I wander here alone.

* “After Life” is a new show on Netflix, written and played by Ricky Gervais. A bit dark, but worth binge-watching if you’re in the right frame of mind. Along with the four prompt words, it is perhaps what put me in the mood to write this piece. I have a feeling it is more Ricky Gervais’s attitude than my own.  Well, maybe a wedding of the two.

 

Prompt words today are pickle, retro, dragon and jinx. Here are the links:
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/03/31/rdp-sunday-pickle/
https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/03/31/your-daily-word-prompt-dragon-march-31-2019/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/03/31/jinx/
https://fivedotoh.com/2019/03/31/fowc-with-fandango-retro/