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THE BEST TIME TO WRITE POETRY

by Mike Douse

Mike is a stalwart of the poetry group that meets in the Three Horseshoes Inn, Llanfaes, Brecon. Also, when living in Ireland, of the Clare Poetry Collective. He is currently living in Mountain Ash when he isn't travelling the world as an education specialist. Co-author of THE GLOBAL SCHOOL - Education in the Time of Digitisation.    


I do not mean the time of day. Or night.
Whenever one is up to it is right.
I am referring, rather, to the stage
Of life, and I say it is in old age,
When thoughts half disappear and cannot be
Recalled to mind in their entirety,
Or when a word that one has used for years,
Like early morning dew, just disappears,
And when the point that one intends to make
Flees from the mind in mischievous mistake
And when one seems confused when one is not
As one’s preoccupied with – who knows what?
And, hearing only those who do not shout,
Whose forms one’s failing eyes cannot make out,
And when one’s much too frail to hurry past
A lace of gossamer too faint to last,
And when, to sit at one’s familiar desk,
Is painful, awkward, in a way grotesque;
When intermittent sleep prolongs the night,
Then is the time to find one’s pen and write,
Unzipped from all the certainties of youth,
Trip into furniture, old friends and truth.
When one’s no more than feebleness and fear
False metaphors of worthlessness fall near,
So scribble through the old familiar pain:
Flesh crumples, joints wear out but words remain.