Poetry by Jeff Green


Then and now

by cricketjeff on September 9, 2009.  © Jeff Green, All rights reserved

With heavy heart and weary tread he closed the silent house,
Each window latched and door-keys set aside.
Where once he moved like music in a waltz by Johann Strauss
Now random aches appeared with every stride.
The kettle filled for morning with one teacup on the tray,
Unready for tomorrow how he longs for yesterday.

The children woke him early when the sun said “Winter’s done”,
The apple tree new-greened and full of light.
He brought her weekend tea in bed then settled into fun,
A day at home then promised him delight.
But now the children stay away, just voices on the phone,
They’re woken in the springtime by some children of their own.

A holiday beside the sea, the boat the boys had hired,
Elizabeth scared silent as they sailed.
He sat and watched his offspring and the lady he desired,
And memories of happiness prevailed.
No holidays, no happiness, no change from day to day.
The years since he last felt like Dad have hidden life away.

Turns out the lights and climbs the stairs, no snore to make him smile,
A lonely bathroom then a lonely bed.
He settles on his pillow and perhaps for just a while
He’ll see them all again inside his head.
Asleep he’s still the man he was, the centre of a life,
Surrounded by his children and beside his lovely wife.