I'm too old to sit in the corner, Too old to twist and turn To find my heart and mind Torn asunder over the Future of the past, the once and future, Over hatred and bigotry. I'm too young to concede The world won't change Its clothes for the better. Won't go to a Humanity-R-Us Establishment for a refit. Overthrow the twenties and big brother's uniform. Can't see the colors for the black and white, like TV when It started, with removable tubes You could change out tubes, glowing bright, at The drugstore, right past the cashier While Dubois sits writing in the corner still. Your still produces the elixir Of rebellion, energizing, Thought provoking, intoxicating, At a forgotten power of protest, Of knowing right from wrong As you swing your placard proudly. School taught me to be nice. A fatal character flaw, unreasonable, Being nice, compassionate, sweet, helpful, All words that buzz and bee. Liberal. I'm too young to join AARP Too old to swing from a Constitutional noose. My email sings the need for money, Donations, signatures, and one, Oh, blessed one, that asks for a tip. A tip for taking my money Because I must be old enough To be rich, to have, to hold, to keep. I'm too old to sit silent, Chevy waiting, To drive with fist shaking, gun toting Road rage. Oh yes, I'll yield, sometimes, But not about my politics. Compromise, act. My caution light gleams yellow, But the red light fails. I run as I take action. I'm too young to hand over hope, tethered to My heart, forever to a cause. So many, Change causes change. I change. Voices cluster. Liberal changes are on sale, bargain prices, On cheap fabric imported that Feeds a family overseas, but saying, "Buy American." Too old to wear a flag upon my two piece, My jeans, jacket, elbow patches. Burn my flag, I'll cheer your voice, Serve my flag, I did that. Embroider my flag on a globe, Don't use my flag to beat and bludgeon Those in need. I'll use it for your shroud. We came, my ancestors came, arrived Found a place, to grow, manipulate Become human, chase their tails with Their tales of how we became great. It was 1624. We started it. The movement. Blame us. We advocated freedom, compassion, hope, education. Don't tell me I'm too old, too young, To tell you to resist the crazy. Crazy Worse than the flu, poverty, student loans, Worse than children dying, drowning, starving. I'll resist your overly patriarchal ambiguities, Attempts to cow and control. My body, my life Too Old, Too Young, not to care To not open my heart to others, to welcome. To litigate with my head. Policy maker. Too proud of being a resistance. For when they first banned intelligence, They hurt us all. Stole from us. . Grow old, grow energized, Hit with words, but true ones, Turn your television to truth. Read a book, French philosophy, Grow young, stand and turn to the light, Like a sunflower, follow the judicial glow. I'm too old to find my seat On the bus, train, plane, without First asking to pre-board. I'm too young to have my dreams dashed As they play pingpong with my future. Let me land, resist, fight. Let me...
While much of the world talks about gratitude, we in the U.S. find ourselves dealing with “anticipation” as the world shakes and turns around us. What’s going to happen in our future? Where will the next shoe drop? What happens if so and so does such and such? And then the political elbows appear to dog us back into our perimeters of uncertainty and our place at the bottom of the totem. Personally, I am tired of elbows being thrown to show who is the authoritarian expert on life itself and am ready to start throwing my elbows around. However that would be tiresome, and tiresome isn’t who I am.
I’d like to anticipate a broad future for us all, but I just don’t have it in me today. So I’ll simplify the anticipation of what I’m anticipating to what it means personally and shake out my brain’s rafters a bit.
We will survive to retire. We weren’t sure of this before, but as we get closer, well, the anticipation is thick with us. (Sorry Yoda.)
- Despite all of the efforts to throw issues between the two of us, my husband and I, we still stand together. I anticipate this to continue, after all, money won’t always be this tight, will it?
- Medical issues will be part of the future, but I think we can handle them. I have good doctors that are willing to work with me as my life becomes more complicated. I’m also willing, and have made arrangements, to donate my body to science so that more can be learned about MS, Type 2 Diabetes, and my other issues. I anticipate medical science will continue to improve our lives. I have to believe that the catch phrase of “there is a cure down the line” will eventually mean there is a cure down the line.
- I anticipate that my husband and my parents will remain independent. Alzheimers disease rates are down. Mom and Dad-in-law are both competent at age 81, and have significantly more energy than I do. They’ll both rock into the 90s knowing that they are well loved. We also have assigned rooms in their names if they ever do need to reside with us. Family will remain an important factor of our lives.
- Our pension is with a union which we predict will float through the changing times. Someday people will understand that those of us at the bottom and the middle are human too. We don’t expect it to happen in our lifetime, but hopefully for our children and our grand nephews and nieces. I anticipate that the union will stay in business.
- Our children are grown, and although there is still one at home, he’s a kind hearted young man. He knows that his situation is putting stress on us, but tries to mitigate it. He’s one hell of a salesman. He also has empathy for those who haven’t had his advantages and has learned how to positively effect those around him with small kindnesses. The other is a competent and surly, beautiful, young woman who can rise to battle as I was once able to. She’s smart, caring, kind hearted and one who will always fight for the underdog. It’s a nice thing to know that what we anticipated our children turning out like has come true. I anticipate that they will continue to amaze me. I anticipate that they will advocate for us when we need it. It feels good to know that they are keeping a close eye on me.
- I anticipate that I will become published one day. It has taken a lot of work, and I foresee more in the future, but I think that my dream will come true. What did Jefferson say? “The harder I work, the luckier I become.” Well, that is a truth that is hard to argue. Finishing the first book was a process of growing into wordier shoes.
- I anticipate, hope, dream, and lust after winning the Emily Dickinson Poetry Contest. It runs out of Chicago and hasn’t been offered for a while. This coming January it is back and will be accepting 46-80 page submissions of poetry by people over 40 years of age who haven’t had a poetry book published. (That would be me.) I’ve started the process of going over all of the work I’ve ever done and honing it down, categorizing it, slimming it, potty training it and all of the other things one must do to succeed where one has never even had a dream of success before. It’s an anticipation to fill all of those hours when I’m alone over December and January.
- I anticipate that I will start to make friends again. I’ve become rather reclusive. The first step to meeting people is getting out of the house, and to that end, I bought a car for me. It’s a vibrant blue 2017 Sonic. Why did I chose that one? I like the way Chevies crash. Two of the people I love have crashed tested their cars in the past 5 weeks and both owners of the Chevies got out of their cars and walked away from what could have been fatal accidents. It wasn’t what I intended to buy, but when I was out looking, I had my son looking out for me. The car had been in the dealership less than 10 hours, hadn’t been processed yet, had two miles on the odometer, and had never been test driven. In a lot of primarily silver, white and black cars, it called to me from around the corner and behind the service bays.
- I anticipate going to spring ball games for our minor league team, the Potomac Nationals. I anticipate going to a bookstore for events like poetry readings, sales, and browsing.
- I anticipate more people standing up for what is right, honest, fair and pushing back against hatred, bigotry, racism, poverty, and ignorance.
I think that I will develop a broader anticipation of what is coming in the immediate future if I am patient and stick to my value system. Kids always amaze me and give me hope. As I watch this next generation grow, I’ll learn which direction we’re headed in and then can focus my anticipation list better. I’d certainly like to become hopeful on a global scale. I’d better go back and look that that gratitude thing, too. Maybe it will allow me to anticipate some really good things in a new light.