Footsteps on the Stairs


Power dressing, shoulder pads, big hair.


At the tender age of twenty-three,

I listened, closely, from my lonely bed,

To spectral footsteps on the stairs…

I wondered, grimly, if they came for me!

They echoed a measured, ghostly tread.

Paralysed by fear, I lay stock still,

Immobilised by my sense of dread!

Who, or what, had invaded my head?


From my upstairs window I caught a glimpse,

Of an older man, who looked quite like me!

And, at the top of the stairs had been left a note,

A litany of advice, in the form of a letter.


‘Worries will come and crowd your mind,

But few of them will ever matter.

Go out, young man, and have some fun,

But do no harm to anyone.

Earn good money, yet always remember,

The best things in life are free…


And leave some time for your poetry!’


Advice to my younger selfPoetry Challenge

◄ For the Present...

Middle-Class Achievers ►


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John Botterill

Wed 10th Aug 2022 08:04

Thanks Rasa, for your truly amazing comment. I shall treasure it! 😀

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Rasa Kabaila

Wed 10th Aug 2022 01:38

Oh, John! I love this poem so much. Thank you for writing it. So earnest and playful and mystical and true. A wonderful piece pf writing. So much wisdom.

My best wishes,

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John Botterill

Tue 9th Aug 2022 22:43

Thanks so much for the likes Carol, Julie, Holden, K,. Lynn, Nigel, Stephen A and Stephen G. It means a lot.

Rasa's suggested a poetry challenge. I proposed: 'Advice to my younger self.' This is my response.
Please have a go yourselves, if you feel moved to do so. 😀

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