Zumwalt Poems Online

The Sassoon Collection

viii. Middle Age

I heard a creak, and a groan
And felt a twinge of wooden pain
A man running in a crowd
Deep in its shadow he moved.
‘Ugly work!’ thought I,
Gasping for breath.
‘Time must be cruel and proud,
‘Tearing down this body.’

With gutsy glimmering shone
my dignity as the wind grew colder.
This aging man jogs over the hill,
Bent to make the grade
‘There is no gain without further pain’…
Sluggishly passing the trees.
Aches in the joints were shrill,
As unmeasured steps sank into the hard asphalt.

— Zumwalt (2011)

Copyright © 2011


Comments on: "The Sassoon Collection: viii. Middle Age" (14)

  1. waningandwaxing said:

    This is great!


  2. thoughtsnotlost said:

    Great work, really enjoyed reading!


  3. go, go,go, challenge yourself, running or….? to keep yourself young? or to keep yourself fit? a man who can’t run has limitations and age is only the beginning. Ever seen, “hamburger hill” with Clint eastwood… amazing how a man so old can still run so well … probably never quit running since his youth. go, go,go, my wife chuckles at me, I exercise during TV commercials (~_~) multi tasking


  4. OH! how cruelly our bodies treat us when we need them most!


  5. The joy of growing older or the punishment of not keeping up with exercise in youth…either way, oh the pain! Loved this! 🙂


  6. Love the poem (alas, it’s true for us all, eventually) – those last two lines are perfect! Keep on running….. metaphorically, at least!! 🙂


  7. Fantastic – ‘wooden pain’ would describe perfectly my attempts to do the same.


  8. love it-I was just writing that writing over time is a doubled sided tape, yellowing and snapping
    whateverway I feel those miles every morning–great return lol a great poem!


  9. Sheila Moore said:

    Great last line. The whole thing is very descriptive


  10. wow this is so intense – i held my breath while reading – i saw and felt this..


  11. Love the lighthearted touch you gave this poem. The VERY elderly make us middle-aged folks feel even older when we observe their “keeping on keeping on” can do attitudes, right?


  12. The last line really captured it well. A stupendous work indeed, my friend! Well done!


  13. Intriguing and wonderfully written! An excellent poem! Looking forward to read some of your future work.


  14. Everyone,

    Thanks so much for visting, reading and commenting!


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