Time’s Hold

Painting by George Frederic Watts . . . 1886

 TIME’S  HOLD

You are what might have been 
on that alternative path,
my abandoned way re-discovered.

But what is now is salient; 
you make me an offer,  
propose to me a future 
that will not arise  
unless hope turns to reality
before Time tires.

When life was fast dissolving,
when my world
 was being wrenched apart,
then, supporting your own cross, 
you came from nowhere
to reach out, to connect,
to take my hope
and cherish it.

What I am left with
is no longer despair, 
but the veiled thrill
of tomorrow’s augury.

You could resolve my need,
bring me that accord, 
of touch, of feel, of senses, 
of minds in tune. 

What you do – for me, now,
is to engender lust, 
that lust of my youth,
for life, for certitude,
which can repel my languor, 
now sequestered by age,
and bring a new intensity,
revivify that spark
which once embellished all.

No longer my past innocence, 
but a considered offering,
a last grasp at time’s hold on me.

SONG – My First Romance

Is there a hope that I can hold,
A hope that I can to me fold
You in my arms,
Die by your charms?

Is there a word that I can say,
A word that will in part repay
You for your trust?
Hold you I must.

Is there in this a single tie,
A knot, a bond, a little lie
To bind, to fix,
Buttress the mix?

Is there a part that I can play?
Can I be certain from today?
Give me the chance –
My first romance.

At Play – Then & Now

Photo: WHB – 2002 (manipulated)

Delight and joy
radiant-coloured youth
ignorant of innocence
and centred on life
with due delight
in present days
radiating their found-freedom
in carefree games amongst the summer trees


Unheeding days
unmelted moments
to be
segued in due time
into the concerns of age
until
at length and in their history’s dusk
appears that second coming
a new oblivion
second innocence


Now untainted
by the warts of knowledge
life-worn futures yet unknown
the pains of caring
hidden from their vibrant view
again sensing nature in its infancy
hell-bent
heaven sent
unfractured youth
presaging the oblivion of age
reflecting only the here
the now
present joy shielding
what once was caring
since faded from life’s reality
by-passing tensions
never now to be revealed



Hope For Glory Yet

‘An English Dawn’ … WHB – Pen&Wash- 2013

Once upon a sublime time
when daylight lingered long into night’s advance
shadows crept from silent space
wrapping themselves around the foothills of my youth
their clutch clinging to my burgeoning hopes
with silky snake embrace
promising to smother all ills
to suck the poison from my advance
and still the waves that beat upon my summer shore

But now with time progressed and prospects passed
with what avails me slipped away
that promised land
the unproven myth
shown for what it is
have I learnt nothing from my dreams
has expectation become ash
youth’s promise proven pallid
yet stubbornly remaining
to bolster what is left to me of life
and give me strength to persist
and hope for glory yet

On Being Cantankerous

Testy now, and truculent,
Jumping to conclusions,
I tend to speak before I’ve thought,
A source of some confusions.

When I was young and in my prime
I would have paused and pondered
Before I’d let my mouth run free;
My mind would not have wandered.

Now, grumpy and cantankerous,
I’ve no wish to be told,
Despite the fact the signs are there,
That I am growing old.

For age and life have brought to me
Such exasperation
That now I speak my forthright mind,
Inviting much vexation.

Now I’m content to be quite brusque,
To stir up some dissent.
My time of life has brought disdain,
I’ll say just what I meant.

With one foot in the waiting grave
Why pussyfoot around?
Just tell it as it is, my friend,
No comebacks underground.

On consideration of the Nature Of TIME

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

APHORISMS:  On consideration of the Nature Of TIME


When Yesterday’s dream
BecomesToday’s reality
All mystery is lost.

When life’s great passion
Turns to dust
Is life still worth the living?

When tomorrow’s goal
Is reached today
How empty becomes the future.

When life and love
are intertwined
Where does pleasure end?

When age has killed
youth’s certitude
What price is placed on doubt?

When yesterday’s promise
Turns into today’s disappointment
It becomes tomorrow’s regrets.

The Grass Above His Grave

PriivateHarvey1

 The end of World War I took effect on the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918.  The inscription on this war grave in the churchyard of St.Mary’s, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, commemorates the short life of Private F.J . Harvey of the Middlesex Regiment, who sadly died just 12 days before this.
He was 18 years of age.

The Grass Above His Grave

And the grasses sway above his grave,
Reminding me of what he gave,
Of hopes as his new life began,
No more a boy, nor yet a man.

*     *     *

The promises of a war, just ended,
Lay before him, starkly spread.
Tempting him to rejoice
In the swollen face of victory.

A life to live, a promise to keep,
Beckoned his youth to greater glory,
But time and life were not for him,
Nor was death a friend.

They conspired to rob him of
The future he had bought,
And, in victory, the fate of so many
Became his own fate too.

*     *     *

And the grasses sway above his grave
Reminding me of what he gave
Of hopes as his new life began
No more a boy, nor yet a man. 

 

Priivate Harvey1

Photos: WHB-2020  …  ©

She Lives

she

SHE  LIVES


With wizened face and withered arms he looks his ninety years;

His hairless head,  those sunken eyes, not given to easy tears.
Though yet a smile lights up his face whenever he looks at her,
For she it is who lights his life, brings calm to soothe his fears.

But she is now a photograph, an image in her youth,
Mounted in silver, encased in glass, resplendent in its frame.
A memory of memories, written on his heart,
Reminder of a life well spent, of the lovers they became.

Long years, a life, have passed him by, the past now left behind.
What does the future hold for him that hasn’t once been tried?
Save memories, now fading, but alive within his heart,
Bringing rich fodder to his dreams, a full life justified.

 

Bar-Rose