It’s Easy To Be Old

It’s easy to be old.
No more heads turn
to ridicule or to admire,
no appraising looks,
no swagger, lust or stomach flat.
Don’t bother pulling shoulders back
or sucking in your gut.
The whistles and inviting smiles
are gone.
You simply are
You scream, blink, and sure enough,
no one hears.  You are invisible.
It’s easy to be old.
It’s the absence of a future tense that kills.

3 thoughts on “It’s Easy To Be Old

  1. James W. Brown commented on It’s Easy To Be Old

    Just saw this. We’re in Greece and have been offline a few days when we went back to Skyros after all these years, the island where I lived when I was starting Blood Dance. I fly back to Boston tomorrow. Today is Jane’s 72nd birthday.

  2. You mentioned a ‘future.’

    Why, just today I was thinking about the future. That is to say, My Future, that bright burning ball in the sky that so many people sacrificed so much for. Throughout my life I have had lots of reminders from those people to think about My Future, usually in reference to something I wanted very much to do, something of meaning to me. I began to perceive My Future as a yoke weighing down my shoulders, as a noose around my throat drawing tighter, as a pair of too-tight shoes. “Honey, think of your future!” made me want to draw blood.

    Eventually I got away from all those people and stopped being bothered about my future. (See, there it goes, that speck in the sky like a kite getting smaller and smaller…) My throat became an instrument to sing with and my chest expanded to a volume compatible with life.

    I do not miss having a future. Indeed, if the My Future all those people crowed about has any verifiable reality, then none of them had a future either. They were all too busy imagining themselves into some other form and place and time to generate any particle of substance. That is, until death put an end to their imaginings and they turfed down into materia natura, giving rise perhaps to a new living organism with greater appreciation for the Gift.

    Now, do not misinterpret my meaning of ‘imaginings.’ Imagination presents at least two facets, these being vision and delusion. Action based on delusion hastens death. Action based on vision supports life. Reason inserts a thin sliver between the two. Suit yourself.

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