Poetry – Strange Days

Strange Days

It is a strange week that has tracked me down –

Full of poignancy and sadness.

The death of a friend, who had already long gone,

Cast adrift in the fog.

The news that another has but weeks to open her eyes here –

Who blithely jokes that at least she is spared

The agony of that same fog –

A fog that like a creeping funeral pall hangs over us all

Like the latest modern scourge.

And amid the ruminations and sad reflection

The words of strangers intrude,

Whose pleasure is to be found in rudeness;

Who play the same playground sad game

Of bullying and ridicule

And seek amusement in hurting others.

And I’m in no mood to respond

Or counter in kind,

But merely wonder at the sickness

That lies in the mind of men

Whose pleasure is but to destroy?

Ruefully looking back over the long furrows of time

Where the many seeds were sown with such great hope,

Seeds scattered in such love and joy,

Such expectation,

Now plants struggling to reach the light

Through the clutching grasp

Of the many weeds.

Yet still we trudge the land and plough

Though there are fewer of us

And no expectation of a good crop.

Wearily I pause to look back

Through the haze of distance

To the furrows ploughed

By my father and grandfather before me

Now smoothed by wind and rain

And returned to nature.

It is time to unwrap the sandwiches,

Take out the flask of coffee,

And sit a while

Else we miss the singing of the birds.

Opher 1.4.2018

It has been a week to make me think and reflect. The death of a friend from Alzheimer’s and the imminent death of another from cancer certainly focusses the mind on the worth of one’s life, the values one lives by, the nature of life and what we leave behind.

It was a week punctuated by the nasty unpleasantness of trolls on my blog seeking to upset, annoy and destroy. Their vindictiveness is symptomatic of these times. There is license to bully.

It puts things in perspective for me.

The reason why we do the things we do – for pleasure, fulfilment and altruism. So little will remain after we are gone. What is most important are the memories we hold in our heads and they will no longer exist. That is what is so terrible about dementia – it robs us of our greatest possession before we are even gone. That is why it is so feared. All we have is the moment. We have to strive to appreciate it and not fill it with hate, destruction and nastiness. We have to live it to the full, seize all our opportunities and the hope that we can pass on something positive of our experience to the future.

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