General Poetry posted November 19, 2017

This work has reached the exceptional level
tanka prose: Life's lessons at 66

An Old Man

by mountainwriter49

tanka prose
by: A. Ray Griffin, Jr.. 17 November 2017, Staunton, VA

We have been helping friends move for the past week. They are moving about a mile from their current home to only a stone's throw from where we live. They are moving from a townhouse row to a beautiful home in an old traditional neighborhood filled with mature trees and mountainous slopes. They're dear friends; close friends--literally and figuratively. I wanted to help them transition from one place to the other. I've not moved stuff since 2014, or in great earnest since 2001. That was 15 years ago when I was young and not far from being in full hue. Today, at 66, my hue has apparently tarnished as I've turned to mush. I feel as though I'm a worthless man, unable to do manly things such as moving hundreds of things up and down stairs as I used to be able to do. My breathing is now labored as I walk up and down, hauling boxes and books from here to there. I have to stop to catch my breath multiple times. What the heck is going on? I rest, revive, and resume my tasks. I observe Dustin and Jeremy lifting all kinds of heavy things and moving faster than Thor's lightening bolts. They barely breathe and don't even sweat! I'm in awe of youth so strong and robust. How very wonderful it is! It causes me to reflect upon when I was able to do this sort of thing without the blink of an eye. And now I am weak, unworthy and unable to do as I once did. It depresses me. I pour another Grey Goose and tonic to ease my emotional and physical pains from today's work...

young oak's strength
withstands the force of early Arctic blasts
of youth has passed me by
as I now sit on life's sidelines

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