Tuesday 13 June 2023

An odd poem plus two more

As promised, an odd poem.

To an armpit
Smooth or stubbly?
Hairy or shaved?
Smelly or perfumed?
Rarely sees the sun. 

Smooth as a baby’s bum
That changes as puberty hits.
Smooth skin wrinkles over the years
Making shaving more difficult
If that’s your preference. 

All parts of the body are necessary
But what does an armpit do?
It connects an arm to a body
A hollow under the arm 

A sweaty place perhaps
A term used to insult a place
A place to put our hands
To keep them warm in winter 

The May 'Write Poetry' zoom workshop was sort of about aging or certainly about time passing.  The first exercise was about writing about the passing of time and a body part.  I actually wrote this after the session and a bit tongue-in-cheek!

The second exercise was about choices made either by me or by someone else which impacted me.

Not good enough for science
Nor good at art
Lousy at languages
Really just a spare part. 

Allowed two ‘A’ levels
Rather than three.
No university application
Training college for me. 

No help from the teachers
For ‘failures’ like me
Despite being in the top
Two percent of the country. 

Decisions made for me
Based on my actions
I didn’t put the effort in
Which caused the school’s reactions. 

Now retired I look back
At choices made for me
How different the trajectory
If I had stood up for me. 

Should I regret the might-have-been
Or celebrate my success?
A life well lived. Good jobs, degrees.
Great friends, a home and health.
Forty years of marriage, a son
And three grandkids. 

Those that made the decisions
Are long gone now.
But did they drive me to impress?

The third exercise was about exploring life through numbers.  I feel I was a bit influenced by the song 'Once I was 7 years old'

Still counting
When I reached 30
I suddenly felt grown up.
My opinions seemed to matter
More than at 29. 

When I reached 40
The mother of a 3 year old
A 37 year gap
Me, a geriatric primigravida. 

When I reached 50
A champagne breakfast
Hosted by a friend
50 was the new 30
Although it didn’t feel like it! 

When I reached 60
The 3 year old was 23
And married.
We went to New York City
And took a carriage ride
Around Central Park. 

When I reached 70
Three score years and ten
There was a garden party.
Not a surprise party because
I don’t like surprises.
But the 23 year old, now 33
Surprised me with his wife
Facetiming through the television. 

And nearly 4 years on
Still counting,
Still reaching towards 80 

I’m aiming for 100
and a card from the King

Thanks for joining me today


  1. I love these three poems! It made me think of attempting the exercises you were writing them for!

  2. Very clever - who would have thought you could write so much about an armpit?

  3. All the poems are wonderful but especially love Still Counting - as I can so relate.


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