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Before the Winter

by Tony Whitaker

Sipping cider on the balcony
On an autumn afternoon
The crisp fall air pulls like
Tiny plastic surgeons
At this slightly sagging skin
To tug a gentle grin
From this contented aging face

The cold wind primes my eyes
From a spring of hidden tears
Creating surreal scenes as I
Watch through wet prisms
At the wonders passing by

I wonder at the old growth forest
In shades of gold and red
Like sitting in a museum
A canvas brushed in still life
That feeds the artist’s head

I wonder as I watch
An older couple shuffle by
Along the well worn trail
As it snakes into these trees
Are they sharing some distant memory?
Or just enjoying each other’s company
When silence says it all

I wonder did this tree
Once green and standing tall
Give shade to friends and family
As time now takes these leaves
I pray you come to see me
Before the winter will


Posted on 11/14/2009
Copyright © 2021 Tony Whitaker

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 11/14/09 at 04:25 PM

wow! Another gem. I just love this one too, Tony! I guess because I can so relate. Silence can be a good thing sometimes. re:"Are they sharing some distant memory? Or just enjoying each other’s company?" Or could it be both? Oh, I just love this painting of words. You are a master of imagery. :)

Posted by Peggie Eng on 11/15/09 at 06:15 AM

Well written, I enjoyed this..

Posted by Glenn Currier on 11/18/09 at 06:56 PM

Well, you can consider me an admiring and appreciative visitor - from one skin sagger to another :-) The leaves you drop on us in general and with this poem in particular are a delight to see and read. I loved the scene you painted - all misty-eyed on your balcony, especially the old couple. Like all good poets, you notice with keen clarity and creativity. Thanks, Tony.

Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 11/20/09 at 03:51 PM

I enjoyed the "tiny plastic surgeons", the "wet prisms", the flow of that third stanza, and those last two lines. That first line invites me in so well.

Posted by Ken Harnisch on 11/22/09 at 03:24 AM

ah, that awesomely profound last line makes the rest of the poem that much more a treasure, Tony.

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 02/15/10 at 01:06 AM

An elegant expression of the passing of time. Of the aging process - both of nature and humankind. The last two lines speak volumes to me. Don't wait until I am too old to enjoy your company!

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