Ageing

Words for later life

Yesterday at Collins Street we commenced a five-week series, The Time of our Lives: Spirituality and Ageing. To begin, we read those poetic if disconcerting words from Ecclesiastes 3, ‘there is a time for everything under heaven.’

In preparing for this series I’ve come across other poetic words, including these two simple but moving little pieces¬†written by older adults. Both say something worth hearing.

The first from Jean Thompson:

White hair: relegation.
Instant dismissal.
Just one of those oldies.
Past action or thought.

White hair: anonymity.
Faceless old nuisance to put into care.
One more for the file.

But white hair is freedom.
Release from convention.
At last unrestricted.
To act as you please.

Yes, white hair’s a distinction.
It shines in the sunshine,
like snowfall in winter,
a badge of experience.
One who survives.

And the second from Ernest Rhys:

We old men,
we are not what we seem
as we go down the street.

In our old eyes
shine boyhood memories:
we have seen horses swerve,
and vessels sail.
We know the crimson curve
upon a young girl’s cheek.

When we wake at the end of night,
we draw as deeper breath
and hail the Lord of Light.
We are not what we seem,
we are not afraid of death
as we go down the street.

2 thoughts on “Words for later life”

  1. Simon I am Looking for yesterday’s sermon(asI wasn’t there) and the latest sermon in “Sermons) what am I doing wrong? is 2013
    David Linke.12/5/14

    1. Hi David, I’m not sure what you’re doing wrong? If you go to RESOURCES, scroll down to SERMONS, then you’ll find the first two sermons of the series right there are the top of the list!

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