Friday, August 20, 2010

When I Am Old

The other day I was sitting outside watching Dakota ride his bike. I was wearing my favorite purple skirt. The sun was moving in to the crack between the trees so I asked Dakota to go in and get a hat to shade my eyes. He came out a moment later with a bright red hat. As I looked down at my purple skirt and put the red hat on my head, I was reminded of a poem.

by Jenny Joseph

With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick the flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.
Now I'm not ready to admit to being old yet. Although some days I really feel it. But maybe I ought to practice a little now as well. Something to think about.

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