We thought we were indestructible…

We thought we were indestructible
That the world was ours to grasp
It was clear it was the old ‘n’  incorrigible
Who’s breath came out in a rasp.
 

And so we lived our comfortable lives
Thinking mainly of ourselves and our own
Getting the best cars to fit in our drives
Making certain our lawns were all mown.
 

We only applied for the very top posts
Believing, as we did, we’re the best
Entertaining bosses as such perfect hosts
We really were promotion obsessed.
 

Then one of you is ill, you’re pulled up dead short
It makes you evaluate your life
You start to resent being one of your sort
The thought cuts your soul like a knife.
 

As time passes by you realise you do care
At the way of the world and the hurt
The way that the rich have far more than their share
While others look for food in the dirt.
 

Perhaps though, most of us go through this change
When the blinkers finally fall from the eyes
We recognise that apathy is wrong and so strange
It’s the time we start hearing sufferer’s cries.
 

Soon your own health gets you into the time-frame
Where your sneezes and wheezes start to count
And you worry that things will never be the same
And are you warm and eating the right amount!
 

You realise you’re far from indestructible
As your breath come out in a rasp
But for you life is ever so precious
And you’ll hang on with your dying gasp.

 
©Joe Wilson – We thought we were indestructible…2015

On reflection…

I rise from my nice warm bed
and having made a morning drink
for my beloved wife, and one for me,
I run a bath.
As I luxuriate
in that warm bubbled water
I reflect on how lucky I am.

Later, washed and dressed for the day
I sit at the table and enjoy
a fine meal from God’s harvest
and again I reflect, and I feel…
guilt!

Guilt for the small children
who have no homes in which to feel safe
guilt that so many of them
will not eat again today.

I feel guilt
for all of the poor women around the globe
who will this very day give birth
to babies who they will surely love
but in whose having they had no choice…
no one ever hears their terrified voice.
Poor women beaten by poverty
who still struggle to feed those children
and yet too those who violate them so.

I feel guilt for all the men who cannot be made
to realise that the world is not theirs to design,
and at the way that some men feel
their own importance trumps all other considerations,
and guilt at all of the war ravaged lands.

And when I look down at the bounteous fare before me
I feel only one thing – shame.

 

©Joe Wilson – On reflection… 2014

The world cries out…

Our world cries out in sorrow again
People dying on lonely streets
And blood is shed and spirits crushed
It seems that history repeats.

Would that we could see the truth
Of all that’s good within our sight
That we would see our own great wealth
And help to ease another’s plight.

If we could see and do all that
And in ourselves we understood
Would we not find ourselves at peace
And know at least we’d done some good.

 

©Joe Wilson – The world cries…2014

Just a boy…

orphanage_edited

It rained
It rained down on me
– and it wouldn’t stop!

The torrent of vicious blows just wouldn’t stop
They beat me
They beat me
They beat me

They wouldn’t stop

I was a boy…I was a child

Why wouldn’t they stop?

Mother!
Father!

Why have you abandoned me?

This is not what it says

This is not a home

This is my nightmare.

 

©Joe Wilson – Just a boy…2014

Life could be harsh in orphanages in the nineteen-fifties.
I’m ever grateful that I only heard of this and didn’t experience it myself.

Life, or is it…updated

Did you call last night, I never heard a sound
just the distant hum of a soul nearby
another lonely person passing by.

Life on the street as a lonely old tramp
under the bridge and out of sight
I live in a loneliness of my own plight

Things you left, things I saw
bits of messages left for me
why won’t you go and let me be.

Is it the booze or is it the drugs
why can’t I make out the words
it makes no sense, it’s completely absurd.

Did you leave anything when you called last night
I’ve thought once or twice about ending my life
But I’d get more drugs if I sold the knife.

How the hell did it get to this point
I’m always too far gone to care
not even sure sometimes that I’m even there.

©Joe Wilson – Life, or is it…2014

 

huddled together like lovers…

from AgeUK
from AgeUK

They sat in blankets as they tried to keep warm
penniless with no heating and no coal to burn
while outside they heard the violent storm
the blizzard of snow and ice all churn.

Slowly they both began to freeze to death
there was no-one to help or ease their plight
they were just poor and lonely old sisters
who would probably die in the dark of this night.

They were just another statistic of winter
a cold one much worse than some others
they had eked out their money on eating
so they now huddled together like lovers.

There are so many who suffer in winter
and we really should spare them a thought
we should all keep an eye out for our neighbour
as help, due to their pride is not sought.

It is dawn now and the sisters are frozen
one died and the other breathes slow
but there is no-one to even take notice
and in a short while like her sister she’ll go.

©Joe Wilson – huddled together like lovers…2014

Thoughts of Old Age

800px-Flickr_-_HuTect_ShOts_-_Old_Age_Steps_-_Masjid-_Madrassa_of_Sultan_Hassan_-_Cairo_-_Egypt_-_16_04_2010
Photo by: Ahmed Al.Badawy, Cairo, Egypt

He was a very poor and sad old man whose pride belied his fear
That one day he’d be a burden to his folks who held dear.
He’d worked hard every single day, now he didn’t cope so well
He knew that his ears were a problem too, he was going deaf he could tell.

He guessed it was just a sign of his age, he’d soon be eighty-one
He’d been fitted with a hearing-aid, but he forgot to switch it on.
And though he had his radio on to listen to all the news
He struggled to tell what was being said, he rarely heard their views.

And so from time to time he sat and enjoyed his garden flowers
He didn’t need to hear them grow, he’d watch them sway for hours.
He’d take his paper and his specs and go down to his shed
And often not read anything as he’d fall asleep instead.

There are times when he forgets though and he sleeps in there all day
When his son or daughter find him, it’s getting more that way.
And he sometimes can’t remember what he’s supposed to do
It’s when his mind goes like this that his thoughts feel stuck in glue.

His son told him the other day he was looking for a place
Where others could look after him, but he’d still have his own space.
He’ll never want to leave this house, his memories are all here
His dear wife still lives in its heart, he won’t go, is that clear!!

But now the odds are against him as he struggles every day
He sometimes doesn’t dress quite right and he cannot properly shave.
And he’ll sometimes sit and weep the tears of a man who feels marooned
He’ll sit and wonder when he’ll die for it cannot come too soon.

©Joe Wilson – Thoughts of Old Age 2014