Typewriter Rodeo: Getting Older

Each week, the Standard reaches out to Austin’s Typewriter Rodeo for a custom poem on Texas topics.

By Sean PetrieSeptember 10, 2021 10:31 am,

Though its effects can feel less than glamorous at times, getting older is a privilege. That was the inspiration of this Typewriter Rodeo poem. The idea came to us via listener request in honor of a father who turned 70 this year.

Getting Older

The calendar says it’s coming up
This birthday
A pretty big one in fact
At least according to numbers
And the decimal system

But I like to measure
More by the moon
And the unfurling of flowers
By how long it takes
A joke to land
And how long
Your smile lasts

I have grown
Sometimes gracefully
Sometimes in stumbles
I have the photos to prove it
Along with these graying hairs
I no longer pluck
These wrinkles when I grin
And when I don’t

Sometimes the mirror
Stops me cold —
Who is that?
But then I keep going
A full-wrinkled smile
Into the next room
Where I can measure time
Not by clocks and calendars
But by all these faces
At the dinner table
The hustle and bustle
Of the life and family
I’ve created

Yes not a big
Candles and cake day
Just the timeless joy
Of connection
This is all the celebration
I need.

a photo of the typewritten poem on a torn piece of paper

typewriter rodeo logoTypewriter Rodeo airs each Friday on Texas Standard. Send us your ideas for a poem on FacebookTwitter, or send us an email.

Typewriter Rodeo is also available anytime in podcast form.

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