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poem: turning sixty

Updated on July 20, 2011


Turning Sixty



It’s like riding the late train,

Lights flashing on and off

As the car clatters and sways,

Waiting for the unimaginable last stop.



It’s like just having suffered

The guillotine and

Some joker holds your head

Up to view the severed body.



It’s like jumping with an antique

Parachute hoping it will open,

Not tear or be moth-eaten

When the cord is pulled.



It’s like awakening

With a black eye,

A humiliating memory

And no excuse.



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    • profile image

      Dustyrose 6 years ago

      it is like crossing another great divide. I think of the song from Simon and Garfunkel. Old friends.

      "how very strange to be seventy." I think I misquoted it. My 60th is next week, I have had many wrecks in my life, but never thought life would be so very beautiful and full of stories that make fiction look lame.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 7 years ago from Minnesota

      Loved the poem barranca. Sixty these days is the old 50 which is VERY YOUNG for today's standards. Have fun and know you can do anything you want. You might get sore though:)LOL

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 7 years ago

      You are a couple of months ahead of me. Didn't Shakespeare say something about that age when "every 3rd thought shall be of my grave?"

    • George J Hardy profile image

      George J Hardy 7 years ago from Southern New Jersey

      I`m turning 62 October 8th and wish I could find an excuse. Are we all thinking alike ?; good poem though.

    • elayne001 profile image

      Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      I'm almost there - I did a hub about turning fifty - but I'm closer to 60. I enjoyed your poem - I guess it is better to be 60 than dead! How short life is. actually I feel like I have lived two totally different lifes so maybe I was reincarnated.

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 7 years ago

      I now have two siblings in their 70s. It is difficult to feature.

    • donna bamford profile image

      donna bamford 7 years ago from Canada

      Never thought I would reach 60 either. Doubt I'll reach 65. 70 would probably astonish me so much I'd have a heart attack. Three of my friends died in their fourties and they weren't - how shall I say it without offending everyone - smokers - yes the s word.

    • profile image

      Eric 7 years ago

      u r the president of ms13

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 7 years ago

      Thanks for stopping by Rochelle. I'm not particularly wistful about the past either. I don't feel much different inside where the meanings are.

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 7 years ago from California Gold Country

      Oh, to be 60 again. (but I really have no complaints)

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 8 years ago

      thanks for dropping by. I just had an extraordinarily peaceful and unemotional 61st birthday. There is life past 60 after all.

    • chrismarva profile image

      chrismarva 8 years ago

      Five yeary to go for my 60th. Where does the time go. Good job.

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 8 years ago

      It has passed. Now it's calm seas & prosperous voyage. Thanks for your kind comments.

    • profile image

      Iðunn 8 years ago

      great poem, but hope that was a temporary feeling. I'm not there yet, but I already know that 60 is going to be grand. your similes were illustrative and unique. wonderful read.

    • Melody Lagrimas profile image

      Melody Lagrimas 8 years ago from Philippines

      Very well-written, thanks for sharing. Please visit my poetry hubs too.

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 8 years ago

      Many thanks. I rode a horse yesterday for the first time in forty odd years, and I could still do it and have fun. So I guess all is not lost.

    • Lgali profile image

      Lgali 8 years ago

      nice poem

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      Seems we each experience our traumatic milestones differently. Thanks for paving the way for those of us still recovering from 50! I particularly love the last stanza! MM

    • ajcor profile image

      ajcor 8 years ago from NSW. Australia

      This poem makes me think of that wonderful poem - when I am old I will wear purple - and then basically do what I like - enjoyed your words on being sixty which is obviously far better than the was the worst for me - dear little black flags and over the hill signs on my desk at work etc...cheers

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 9 years ago

      I never thought I would live past 30, 40, 50, and now horrors! 60. 30 & 60 seem to be the worst so far. Beginning to wonder what I have done to deserve such longevity. Not really so bad.....there is a clarity and freedom that arrive as well.

    • christine almaraz profile image

      christine almaraz 9 years ago from colorado springs

      Great poem. I have never thought about what it will be like when I'm sixty-I just hope insanity hits early so I can enjoy my later years. I'm actually looking forward to the later years, 80's, 90's, 100's so I can finally live in bliss and insanity:) (hopefully!)

    • Cris A profile image

      Cris A 9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      No problem. I'm not looking forward to it anyway - that is if i'm reach it at all! :D

    • barranca profile image

      barranca 9 years ago

      Thanks for the encouragement. I wouldn't recommend turning sixty.

    • Cris A profile image

      Cris A 9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      I love the subdued tone of this poem, like sweet surrender. Great similes too! Thanks for sharing :D

    • profile image

      Francia 9 years ago

      I like your "no limit" landmark in the picture. Your poem makes me want to look back at the past with openess and honesty which by now I am already doing. I am looking forward to more poems in this site.