Old Woman by a Window

Old Woman By A Window

She smiled,
Distilled calm with echoes of grazed knees,
Of laughter among trees
Of bursting bright fun-
Pillaging life’s treasury
Filled freshly with health, vigour and wonder.

Eyes glazed with time’s wounds
Announce to dusty window panes
A separation.
A focus on lost young worlds of awe,
A recital of thrilling images
Streaming up in rainbow sequence;
Edified, edited and elsewhere: so elsewhere.

Merciful memories
With imagination’s paintbox
Brush out gaps with fluid mosaics of smiles and kind faces-
Then cold intrusion.
Re-gelling the fusion
Of woman, room and chair.

In condescending care speak,
The support worker’s insidious call.
A bath. Life stops for a bath.
Lights up. Film over.
(Leaden submission).
No remission.

In creased coloured photos
Great grandchildren radiate joy,
But wilful neglect and so many miles
Her self-respect erodes. She smiles.
Her real identity she’ll always find
In the sweet time capsule of her mind.


  • Alda

    Beautifully expressed. This is my mother. maybe yours? Could be so many in this world.

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