59 and Counting

wikimedia commons
Death of the Grave Digger
Carlos Schwabe
in the public domain in the United States

i look for bits of me
under beds
in drawers.

dust bunnies run amok.

there was a time
i knew who i was,
it was clear.

on tuesdays
i taught.

on sundays
i slept in,
held your love between my teeth
and inhaled
your scent off my pillow.

fifty nine.
i say it
over and over.

it feels old.

maybe it is.

i look for the youth
i left
stubbornly clinging
to boxes of lace,
afraid to let myself go.

if i opened
the lid just once
would i know myself
in the things
i placed in there
so long ago. . .

fifty nine
years, losing bits of me
i would cry
but i can't find that part of me.

copyright/all rights reserved Audrey Howitt 2015

Posted for Real Toads


  1. I'm 59 and I hear every line of this!

  2. Soon 54.. and it has changed so much the last few years.. Love the dust bunnies... love it.

  3. no way you are 59....smiles....
    held your love between my teeth and inhaled...love that part....
    that ending is quite evocative...oy, i am just a bit behind you..
    but i am charging...

  4. "Old" is whatever age is higher than your current age, and it keeps changing every year! This is an exquisitely done poem, Audrey.

  5. Very poignant, Audrey--your voice seems young and vibrant--the box is a bit like pandora's! But that lace will still fit! Take care and thanks, K.

  6. I think that being old is only defined by the many experiences someone has had. Wisdom comes with age, and that can only be obtained by doing things. I really enjoyed reading this poem Audrey. :)

  7. Aging gracefully one will not feel! It is dignified and fulfilling with lots of fun and thrills to reflect on! Wonderful write Audrey!


  8. 59 is in my rearview mirror....are there things I miss? Yes! Things I regret? Yes! Am I loving life? YES!!!!!

    I think you are speaking for a great many people in this one, Beautiful work, my friend.

  9. So many images dancing together to form a field of living. I love everything about the first stanza. I can see the speaker crouching, looking under the bed... And this line: "held your love between my teeth", such jolt of yum.

  10. It is a plunge in cold water, aging. One is definitely awakened from the long and sometimes futile dream, but it also makes your teeth chatter. The imagery in this poem is exquisite, sharp, and haunting. I especially like the last lines, where our current self is almost terrified of --meeting or *not meetin*?-- our former self. Can it really all be gone? I don't think so, it's just changed in ways we haven't learned about yet. Or so I think. Excellent poem--a pleasure to read it.

  11. You're still young and as you go along your lovely poetry will keep you eternally young.

  12. This is the reality of honesty. I am soon to be 64, but I am learning to not peek inside boxes. In many ways I feel more alive than I did 20 years a go.

  13. I'm 71 and feel this even more, yet part of me still feels 21.

  14. we all cling to something - at least for a while. I remember once it was my jean mini-skirt (long gone) and I DO have a little lace something I have in the very back of my drawer… ha. Yes, I feel this poem, too. Very well done.

  15. Awesome poem, and so much truth in there!! I'm in my 40's but feel much the same. Thank you for sharing something so deep and meaningful!

  16. We do lose parts of ourselves; but that which we gain is so much more significant.

  17. hi I like this a lot....haven't seen you around lately...I haveent been writing lots lately.....painting....and trying to get a poetry book ready to publish...cheers from Canada

  18. It seems we both were thinking of age and aging in our poems. I think when I wrote mine I was mourning a bit of lost bits of me too....I am almost at that 59 and wonder how it will affect me....really wonderful poem.

  19. you definitely must be talking about someone else... but you sure captured the emotions which surround this time of life... nicely done... I turned 60 last year... one always rediscovers them-self


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