Why I don't write greeting cards

Today's my birthday, I turn and say

to the young man sitting to my side.

He looks at me in some surprise;

words unspoken, speak:

Seriously, at your age you continue to trace

the number of years you've stayed alive?

And I question myself, what it means

to celebrate a day that's just a date

which measures only the distance

from birth to now.

When the future annum holds fewer dreams,

less to be achieved,

wouldn't it now make greater sense

to count how much time remains instead?

◄ If you can ...



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Dave Carr

Sat 14th Aug 2010 07:25

If this is true (or even if it isn't) you picked the wrong person.
It might have been a different poem if, for example, the man had sung happy birthday to you or offered to share his KitKat.
Anyway - Happy Birthday!

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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Mon 9th Aug 2010 17:06

I enjoyed this, Alison, although I can't imagine what age you are referring to. An aged and brilliant friend once said to me: Pooh! What are birthdays - but the number of revolutions which you have made around the sun? I was struck with the rich immensity of the idea, and have held it close to my heart ever since.
BTW, I'm not sure 'annum' is the right word in this context; it seems 'staged' and, for me, interrupts the sincerity of plain speaking. And I suppose the obvious question has to be: how do you know 'how much time remains'? I think I know where you're going with the idea, but have you actually expressed it clearly? Just IMO.

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