You Have Grown Old With Me
By Jane Tawel
April 9, 2016
This is a poem that is meant to be taken in several ways about several loved ones.
You have grown old like I,
With me–You have grown old.
We share a lot of memories.
Your cheeks don’t sag like mine,
Your bone structure is better;
But you have more grey hairs on your chin,
Until probably the next time I look in the mirror.
I need to remember to ask you more politely to have a seat,
Not just bark out “sit!”– but old habits die hard and
We have used familiar, familial short- hand for many, many years.
I remember the day I met you.
You were so chipper, so lively, so bright.
Now you sleep a lot and snore too– you know you do.
Your eating habits have changed, much like mine,
Bones might stick in our throats, if we don’t use care.
I wish your breath didn’t sound so scary,
I wish mine didn’t stink so much.
When we pass folk on the street, no one remarks our cuteness any more.
We might as well be invisible grey ghosts and someday,
God willing, we will walk as ghosts in this world,
But as we once were here,
We will scamper in The Next.
Maybe you’ll take the lead– Next Time.
It makes me so sad to look at you, but you sure don’t ask much from me.
But then I don’t recall that you ever have.
A little tenderness, a little touch, good food in a bowl and warmth snuggled at night–
What else is there to expect or treasure in life?
You had it all.
And always tried to teach me that I did too —
I had it all, if only I could give up the anxious worrisome Wants.
You take my love as you always have–
Open hearted, always a joy to meet again.
You are all of yourself still and forever,
Falling in love with me, and letting me love you
As if it were the very first time,
I saw you,
In the pound,
Your whole body waving frantically
Barking your greetings
Ready to walk through life with me.
We chose the best in each other, hoping to keep bringing it out.
Now, these things must remain: faith, hope and love
And you and I have had all three.
We will walk together as we always have
Into a life forever young.
I love you, my pet.
Thank you for loving me.