Death Is Always On My Mind

(Watching the oncoming hurricane Maria. The 2nd in two weeks – same place) 

        Death Is Always In My Mind

Death is always on my mind

In one way or another.

Lying there sneakily,

Shaking me

When something happens on TV.

All around a violence:

In the weather, in the city,

In our children, in the poverty:

Calamity.

How to stay calm lamb myself;

A question half my brain

is taken up with.

 

Hurricanes, shoulder pains,

Underlying wonderings.

Questions without answers;

Wishes not yet answered.

 

And the time!

Always the passing

Without chance of stopping;

In the stars, the planets;

In the ants & stones & plants.

Yet a cup of coffee

And the world is right.

All the worries of the night

Transformed,

And energy to right my life –

If not the world –

Uncurled –

Thus one goes forward.

 

Death Is Always On My Mind 9.19.2017

Pure Nakedness; Nature Of & In Reality; Our Times, Our Culture II; Birth, Death & In Between II:

Arlene Corwin

 

A Body Winds Down

         A Body Winds Down

A body winding down –

Its signs a preparation:

Loss of appetite, sound sleep at night;

Strength in arm and grip,

Youthful movement in the hip;

Fifty small, small things of note –

To note, denote, remote

As they may be.

 

Beginning early, barely showing:

Gone or worn, the bite uneven,

Pearly whites no longer pearly;

Vocal cords and tongue or throat

Cracked, coated…

Body borne from infancy,

Winding down.

 

There it is, the fact of it.

Can you take

The tact of it?

(Or tactlessness –

The zero chance to make

It over?)

Living’s always closing in on kith and kin –

On all and every who can’t win,

The numbers passing by

Each day receding into destiny.

A Body Winds Down 9.14.2017

Circling Round Aging; Birth, Death & In Between II; Circling Round Wrinkles;

Arlene Corwin

It Was A Sunny Day Today

 

 

 

Seventy & Eight

Seventy and eight:

You’ve set aside some vanity.

What was it but priority?

And some priorities have changed.

Acceptance of some disappearance;

Change of balance, skin that’s run the distance,

Re-arrangement of the substances inherent –

or you thought..

 

When you’re nearing birthdays

Each and every twelfth damned month,

You shun

The cant if you’re observant.

‘Happy Birthday’ not so plain.

This has that… and that’s a pain.

Marriages have come and gone,

You’ve eaten everything on offer.

Gone the need to empty coffer entertaining.

 

Suffering more neutralized;

So many friends and kin have died.

You’ve channeled drives

That used to thrive on pleasure.

 

With a birthday coming up

You’re going down each second’s unit

So immeasurably tiny you can’t count it.

 

Here is where it gets didactic:

Birthdays coming up – don’t hope but have it.

As for vanity, retract it.

That’s it.

 

Seventy & Eight 10.28.2012/revised 8.27.2017

Birthday Book; Circling Round Vanities II; Birth, Death & In Between II;

Arlene Corwin

Who Wouldn’t Want To Be Remembered?

Who wouldn’t mind being remembered?

It’s not the same as wanting fame –

Naiveté’s vanity its other name.

 

Who wouldn’t mind some impact?

An itch to reach out

Maybe teach, knowing one knows so little –

Naught at all – We are so small.

 

But art is there,

And impulse wants from within wants out,

Shouts quietly with word

When you yourself have disappeared.

 

Who Wouldn’t Mind Being Remembered? 8.16.2017

Birth, Death & In Between II;

Arlene Corwin

 

Sitting In My Own Light (one more funeral)

Sitting In My Own Light

  (one more funeral)

 

Sitting in my own light,

Senses alert.

Eyes see, ears hear –

Most of all, the brain is clear,

Emotions still.

Still one more funeral –

Or three or four,

Waiting for those bells to toll.

 

Sitting In My Own Light 7.27.2017

Birth, Death & In Between II;

Arlene Corwin

Once I Was Young

A cliché maybe,

For the multitudes have said it,

Yet,

One thinks it now and then,

In one way or another.

Situation, circumstance transport it to

The frontal lobe.

One probes the wardrobe of the brain

Where dreams have lain

And lie there still, so very still and quiet.

 

But today I chanced to see

A photograph of me

And chanced to say,

“Once I was young”.

It did not feel like cliché,

But fresh, revivifying

Memories I had not thought about,

Affections that now brought about

Sensations not particularly rosy –

But not jarring either.

More a nosy statement not opposing fact;

In fact, prosaic,

Dry.

 

I

Once

Was young

Not to

Be that again.

Do you

Experience that also?

Once I Was Young 7.23.2017

Birth, Death & In Between II; Circling Round Aging;

Arlene Corwin

 

 

 

This Body

Pesky, troublesome, capricious;

Efforts to control a wild-goose chase,

Farcical: a waste.

A strain in vain; hurts when it hurts;

Longings and desires, when and where it will,

Its underskirts.

 

It goes its way, in the way

And sometimes, thank the Lord, not…

One is forced to say,

“This is my lot.

I’ll do what I can do to help it stay

As long as possible;

Comfortable, perhaps good-looking, but

God knows, that part is least.”

This body is a beast

With some kind of intelligence that lies in destiny.

 

Goodbye old vanity,

Old friend one used to think so highly of,

Be steered by and obey.

Goodbye old energies one understood so little too.

Goodbye old you –

With arms, legs, trunk,

All of its useful junk inside;

The ride, the slide,

The destination thought its own,

Just bone,

If that.

 

You notice I don’t call it ‘my’,

Belonging as it does to nature.

‘It’ an it and ‘this’ a this; this body a bo-die.

 

This Body 7.15.2017

Circling Round Vanities II; Birth, Death & In Between II; Nature Of & In Reality;

Arlene Corwin

 

 

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