14

I was told to look to the elderly men in my town for sage advice. For the problems that would plague my raw youth,
they would have the answer, the solution.
I was told by no one and everyone to look to the old men in my town for good words.
These tacit instructions
Any approach was stagnated by my sight.
Tan or dark
wrinkled skin
stretching against the bone
or hanging down as if clutching onto life
Teeth gone and crooked like long ago built fences
useless now
Glassy eyed
as if there were tears to be shed
for things lost
for things not finished
for things that couldn’t be done
for things abandoned
for regrets
Am I supposed to look to these men
These old men in my town
who blend into the cracked
creaking wood of their porches
Who sit so still
staring at the future
of their changed past
In my town
there are many old men
that I see as I pass them by

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