At 7am my phone stirred
It bleated and it cried
It wailed and it chunnered
I thought someone had died.
It beeped and made a lot of noise
Alerting me to a text
I blearily put on my specs
And pressed the buttons next
Still not well the message said
I’m off to A&E
Can you mind the chickens
Again today for me?
You are the salsa beneath my wings
You are the sauce I dip my chips in
You are the zesty fire that stings my mouth and makes me sweat
You are the hot sauce that I dare not touch
You are the creamy smooth bechemel that I layer on pale sheets and bury in the red
You are the mustard for my sausage
The cream for my trifle
You are the relish of my life
You are the dressing on my salad
The taste explosion that blows my mind
You are the flavours of my heart
You are my world entwined
And everything I eat, I eat with you in mind.
OK, hands up, I’ve not done my homework again. Well I have started it, but If I told you it mentioned ketchup you’d not get the joke. OK, a couple of people on the planet would maybe have a vague idea of what I’m getting at but…
The pensioners of today, were once the youth of their day. What happened to the baby boomers as they grew up? Maybe their childhoods were fractured by the aftermath of the war. Maybe they are just grumpy now because they are nearing death.
But children never think of death. They are invulnerable. They are immune to the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, and immune to the words of those around them. There is however an age at which you realise you are not immortal. That life has such a fragility about it that it will make your heart bleed with pain and your eyes weep as if they are burning.
The day you realise this is the day you change from a youth into an adult. The day your heart is ripped out and you realise your family has reduced in number. The day you realise what death means. The day you peer out over a cliff and really sweat with fear. The day you realise that you too have a finite number of days left. The day you realise that there is no point in crying because it can not change anything.
As you make that move from youth to adult your brain hard-wires itself to rethink, re-plan and reorganise the neurons into a new pattern. Life changes, your cells regenerate daily and over 7 years you are completely anew. That doesn’t mean you are young, just that your cells have undergone mitosis and have multiplied, duplicated and replicated themselves out of trouble. You are young only because you do not have grey hair. Time will come and paint that on for you soon enough. You are young because you have energy and no pain in your limbs. Life will inject that misery into your bones as it sucks the life out in exchange.
You will become old, no longer a youth of today. Apart from one tiny corner of your soul that will be forever fourteen. The girl who smiled as the shy boy on the bus. The girl who waved at him every day for the next three years. The girl who sneaked a cigarette. The girl who wore grey lace up boots with her new jeans. The girl who still went to the corner shop for her mum. The girl who typed endless onto reams of paper. The girl who dreamed of being an adult and moving away. That girl is still young.
Unless something better crawls out of my brain by tomorrow this might well be my homework.