who was once young

is now aging

body once pristine

is now weathered

eyes once clear

are losing their light

steps that were quick

have become unsteady

this rock, this touchstone

fading into wallflower


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About John White

I've written off and on my entire life. It took years for me to finally take putting words together seriously. Now it's not, nor does it ever feel, like work. Writing daily has become habitual. No day is complete without words having appeared on the page.

Posted on July 27, 2015, in Poetry and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 48 Comments.

  1. Don’t start John
    Just came back from the Dr how to start new medicine because this body is not up to what it use to be
    Old is not just an age it’s now a inconvenience

    • Thanks, Sheldon! Now that’s a sermon worth preaching. It’s a number that can get us down if we think of it in terms of just getting older rather than looking at it as simply a couple of digits or if we’re lucky, three digits. Those doctor visits can become more frequent and even much more serious as the years pass though.

  2. Well that was sad! Don’t you know age is only a number?? lol Just giving you a hard time. It was beautiful as always. πŸ™‚

    • Yes, ma’am, just a number. You’re right. This is one that I suppose could have been about me but was written with my dad in mind. Having reached those twilight years he’s changed so much and faces obstacles that I simply can’t fathom and likely won’t be able to comprehend until I’m also elderly. Thanks again for your comment! πŸ™‚

      • Just the other day, I was having lunch with my mom, and she looked at me and said the hardest part of getting “old” was feeling like she was still 20 in her mind. She is 79. It really put the mind-body connection in perspective for me. So I guess it’s a good thing to feel that way in your mind, but how do you reconcile feeling like that physically? That’s the sad part. I guess that’s where the term “growing old gracefully” comes from.

        • Oh you’re right and so is she. The mind can stay razor sharp while the body just isn’t willing anymore. The only problems come when we let our young-thinking mind tell our aging body that we can still do something we’re not capable of. lol It’s gotten me in trouble a few times even though I’m not anywhere near 79 but if the body can’t…it just can’t. lol

          • I’m going to have trouble with this I can tell. But I guess the thought of it motivates me to keep taking care of myself πŸ™‚

            • Aging affects us all in one way or another I suppose. I’m facing down a major milestone birthday but I no longer dread it. I used to but now I’m looking forward to it. I can’t wait actually. In fact, I’ve virtually stopped looking at it as just a number but more like a score or a badge of honor. “Hey, look at this! I’ve lived ___ years!! I made it!!” lol

              • That’s a great attitude. And you’re so right – I mean what is the alternative, right? I think it’s really vain when people complain about things they can’t control. And there are many people suffering right now who would give anything to live longer. Thanks for that uplifting thought, John!!!

                • Exactly! My older brother was killed just weeks short of his 21st birthday. I was 10 at the time and not old enough to truly understand what it all meant. In the years since, I’ve come to terms with it and learned that if life gives you another day, another year or many years you’d better appreciate them. It was a bit of an eye opener to reach 40 but that didn’t last long and 50? I had a stretch where I kept asking if I could handle it but since then…I’ve not only come to terms with it but it’s just going to be a great day!

                  • And you’re a guy, John! And you get to only look better when you get older! Where’s the fairness in that? LOL

                    • Oh that’s not fair! lol Sure, I’ve known people who aged gracefully and some…well…not so much. lol But what is beauty anyway? If it’s strictly about aesthetics then my age won’t matter wince I wasn’t born with good looks anyway. lol I’ve talked to far too many women about this especially since I grew up with 2 sisters and I’ve always thought there’s nothing to worry about. It’s not uncommon for a woman to be more beautiful through the years especially with added maturity and confidence. Those are attractive qualities.

                    • You’ve got the words and the depth, John, that’s for sure. And that’s what matters, you’re right. πŸ™‚

  3. Such is the passage of time — A hard but inevitable truth…

  4. Wow, have been feeling just like you say, but I don’t want to give in to age, I want to be a strong 67 and 68, 69, 70………..

    • Thank you! πŸ™‚ I agree we can’t give in to it. Our minds generally get better and stronger as we get older which overcomes any physical ailments. There’s no better way to fights against age than with the mind. It’s great to meet you!

  5. This seems more apt than it ever could, John. I lost my Granny yesterday to this inevitable truth.

  6. Well worded – this aptly describes aging..

  7. Unfortunately, I feel like this too often.

  8. Reminds me of an old prayer. So little so much to do! Tee hee πŸ™‚

  9. Edit button… time.. time!

  10. This perfectly fits how I feel today, for my day was just a tad bit off. . Once again, John.. well done.

    • Thanks, Sherina! πŸ™‚ It’s trying to have those days when it just doesn’t quite click but I’m sure you’ll bounce back tomorrow!

      • I’m hoping as such, for life seems pretty hazed and gloomy on my off days. I’m looking forward to waking with a bounce tomorrow, so hopefully you’re rightfully stated.

        • I do hate the off days! Even if it takes a few days, you can bounce back. Maybe it’s not a high bounce tomorrow but eventually you’ll be bouncing as high as ever. πŸ™‚

  11. Unfortunate but true. This body is wearing away to be sure. I do miss baseball, softball, racket ball, tennis, and golf; the only thing I can do anymore is pin pong. Is that not pathetic? Nevertheless, God is good, all the time.

    • Oh not pathetic at all but we do lose a lot of the physical abilities we had in our younger years. That’s when the mind become the muscle we have to work out often. πŸ™‚

  12. This hit me right in the heart. I’m living it! Well done for capturing it.

    • Thank you, Kat! πŸ™‚ I hope all is well with you. I wrote this about my dad who will soon be 88 and his health, as you might imagine, is failing though he still gets around fairly well. He inspired it but I also had in mind so many others I’ve known who were shut-in or who were bed-ridden or simply immobile and how anyone could or would just pass by them turning the ailing person into a wallflower. That’s always saddened me so much. Again, I hope all is well with you. It’s a pleasure to meet you!! By the way, my mother’s name was Katherine and everyone called her “Kat.” πŸ˜€

      • I feel as you do. I’m disabled and confined to a motorized chair 98% of the time. I was a professional speaker and psychotherapist and now I’m an artist and a photographer from my chair. It’s amazing how I can ask a person a question and they look at whomever I am with to answer instead of me!

        I’m looking forward to reading your poetry. Your mother had a beautiful name that means “pure in heart.”

        • I can imagine the struggles but your determination is an inspiration! Everyone has limits and some have greater limiting factors but they should not be allowed to stop us from pursuing something we love.

          People can be strange or as I’ve been known to say before, humans are strange people. They may feel uncomfortable looking down physically but unfortunately those are the laws of physics at work since you’re seated so if they want to see your face and speak directly to you, they’ll have to look down. Of course, speak down physically but certainly not speak down to you mentally or to be condescending.

          Katherine is a great name. You’re right. Everyone was fond of our “Kat.”

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