Well, I’ve been fortunate enough to have another birthday. It was such a beautiful day that I largely avoided the painful introspection that usually accompanies birthdays. Then that night, I checked my email, and read the daily poem I get in my Inbox, and there it was, the perfect birthday poem:
“I Dreamed That I Was Old” by Stanley Kunitz
I dreamed that I was old: in stale declension
Fallen from my prime, when company
Was mine, cat-nimbleness, and green invention,
Before time took my leafy hours away.
My wisdom, ripe with body’s ruin, found
Itself tart recompense for what was lost
In false exchange: since wisdom in the ground
Has no apocalypse or pentecost.
I wept for my youth, sweet passionate young thought,
And cozy women dead that by my side
Once lay: I wept with bitter longing, not
Remembering how in my youth I cried.