My Lot Is Cast
Catching up on the posts I have missed during this busy week, I read this from Waking Up On The Wrong side of 50 – Life Lessons, I thought back to a post I wrote 10 years ago. I talked then about ageing and how things change as we get older. I would like to repost some of that here:
In that post, I talked about my sisters both of whom live/lived on the other side of the world, both were prolific readers and emails were full of books each of us had read. My sister in Los Angeles (she died in August last year) was apparently very fond of Nicola Upson’s series about detective Jacqueline Tey. She quoted one of her favourite poems which came from the book “To Love and Be Wise
“My lot is cast in inland places,
Far from sounding beach
and crying gull,
who knew the sea’s voice from my babyhood
Must listen to a river purling
Through green fields
And small birds gossiping
Among the leaves”.
I don’t live in inland places – the ocean is about 10 minutes drive away, but I miss the sights and sounds of the ocean that I used to see from all the windows of my home. It seemed that we were surrounded by the sea and its activities. For 15 years we lived in that house. The children spent their teenage years there and we became almost immune to the fantastic views from most windows. We could see not only the ocean with all its comings and goings (cruise ships, ferries, barges and tugs for the port) but the planes landing at the airport, and the trains bringing people and goods into our capital city. So maybe this post should be headed “Trains and Boats and Planes”.
And as in this poem, now I don’t hear the crying gulls when I awaken in the morning but I do hear the small birds gossiping among the leaves. I love the thought of the birds gossiping.
I hear the sounds of busy families getting ready for their day – households waking up, newspapers being brought in, children going to school and parents to work. The road outside my house is alive with activity for a short time each morning and then, as if a switch has been pulled, the peace descends and only those of us who are no longer living the busy years are left behind.
We have time for another leisurely cup of coffee; time to exchange pleasantries with our neighbours as we retrieve the newspaper from the drive; time to read the newspaper, complete the crossword and as I am getting older, I peruse the death notices just in case there is somebody I know mentioned there.
And so –
My lot is cast
In different places
Not beside the river or the ocean
But in the city with its life and vitality.
Not in the distant years of my youth
Nor the busy years of family life
But the peaceful years of time for me
To enjoy friends and family.
Time to investigate new things
New activities and new friends
Time to be me.