When They Were Young









On the green hill with the river beyond it
long ago and my father there
and my grandmother standing in her faded clothes
wrinkled high-laced black shoes in the spring grass
among the few gravestones inside their low fence
by the small white wooden church
the clear panes of its windows
letting the scene through from the windows
on the other side of the empty room
and a view of the trees over there
my grandmother hardly turned her head
staring like a cloud at the empty air
not looking at the green glass gravestone
with the name on it of the man to whom
she had been married and who had been
my father’s father she went on saying nothing
her eyes wandering above the trees
that hid the river from where we were
a place where she had stood with him one time
when they were young and the bell kept ringing
~W.S. Merwin “Windnoon” from The Moon Before Morning







Visiting the graves of those who lived and loved for decades,
now mere dust lying side by side,
their spirits risen and flown~
we realize we were young once and now
feel the weight of change and passage of the years
despite our effort to grab and hold them still.

The bells of time keep ringing in our memories.








3 thoughts on “When They Were Young

  1. A beautiful entry. Of all the fine images, I like the hay bales (if that’s still the correct term) most because they capture the essence of time gently slipping away into memory, then memories of memory, and so on into infinity.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is the memories, those precious links in time that forever connect us. Those who have preceded us are still present to us in so many ways:
    – in the visage and mannerisms and other characteristics of their children, grand- and great-grand children;
    – at grand family reunions when all gather together to mark and relive that connection by telling stories and recollections that make them live again;
    – when the immediate family gather for Sunday dinner, birthdays, and other celebrations we look around at the empty chairs and remember vividly – sometimes with
    misty eyes – , but always, ALWAYS thank God that we are still part of them and they with us – forever. Who among us could hope for a more loving, intimate legacy….

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.