The Aged Man

Written by: Chuck Keys

The Aged Man
                            Authored by Chuck Keys

There is a sadness inside of him,
Draped by layers of heartaches and disappointments,
Insulated with his long beard, thickly white eye brows, 
Unkempt brushy long dense white hair, 
Dry peeling cracked lips, slightly ajar, 
Showing his smoke stained chipped teeth,
Wearing a dark, soiled, bulky long scruffy ankle length coat, 
Two buttons were missing, 
With a 2" uneven tear at the bottom of its left side stained pocket,
A dirty powder-blue weathered wool and leather hat, with ear flaps down,
It was a long cold night, in mid-January, the month of his birth. 
He moves like a man covered with fear and age, and maybe hunger too.

Mornings and evenings are but doorways 
In and out of his leftover forgotten soul,
To the long endless days and nights, forlorn and grey.
He meanders about with a slow cautious gait, head down often times,
Eyes more closed than open, squinting even in the dark unlit night,
Torn gloved hands (with a large irregular frayed hole in the palm of the left),
Each hand fisted tightly for warmth,
Arms tightly at his side, stationary, not swaying, 
Protectively wrapping himself inside,
Or just holding himself, maybe for warmth or some unexplained reason.
His life is full, the years buried deep inside.

The pounding aches inside, remembers his early years, 
Ages ago, wrapped and protected inside his large family,
But never a part of it, not inside, 
Always outside searching, for what can't be found, ever.
His own family that slowly left him was remembered,
Material children today, groundless at best,
That have no memory of what was, 
Only what is or what will be.
Grandchildren that lacked life inside his hug.

The pounding aches inside; smirks, sometimes,
Knowing time and space, loving and giving, peace,
Remedy for all that ails.
He knows only what he knows,
He loved, loves and will always love.
Even alone, he is in joy, at peace. 

The old man walked into his last mile, a short while ago,
His slow cautious gait, one small step after another, and another,
As the gates opened, he turned and looked behind,
Frowned and smiled, 
With nothing left to say.