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August 4th, 2018

So far...

So far...
by Christopher Walsh, 8/3/2018-8/4/2018





I can only be a certain age.
Mathematically, chronologically,
I showed up on a certain date at a certain time in a certain year.
1973. Early enough
That I saw
Some of the weirdness of the Seventies
And can remember it.
(The colors. There were certain colors.)
It's enough long ago
To seem a little surreal.
("I saw that, right?")
Life is filtered.
Otherwise there's too much to recall easily.
And you can't fully rely on even your memories
Getting your life
Correct.
We edit. We select and gloss over some and,
Maybe,
Lie to ourselves.
Memory: it's complicated.

I can only be a certain age,
But experience is variable,
Depending on how busy I've been
And how much attention I've paid.
Did I learn from [x]? From [r]?
Did I learn more in 1986 or 1999?
Did I learn much last year?
What haven't I learned yet?
(Beyond crochet, I mean.)

I can only be a certain age,
But I can feel different ages.
I could act like a kid. Trust me.
I could act old.
I can remember being young; I can see being old.
I have enough youth
(For a certain, personal value of "youth")
To draw on.
People sometimes think I'm younger than I am. Some guess wrong by nearly a decade.
This amuses me.
This is also partly why I sometimes grow a Van Dyke.
A grey-and-white one.
I look more my age with it.
I don't deny my age.

Do I wear my years?
Can they be seen on me?
Are they heavier than I should expect?
When is my age hard to carry?
When it's a weight from sad experience.
When it all seems sad.
When it pretends to be
Nearly 46 years
Of nothing but sad.

I can only be a certain age.
I have a quantifiable,
Finite,
Collection of sadness-causing times,
Of happiness-causing times,
Of anger-causing times,
Of times that range through life, lived.

But
I can be happier.

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