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Time: A Limerical, Lyrical Look


A truth I've learned: poetry can say so much in a very few words.


When you’re born you don’t know its meaning
Demands are just sleep, food and cleaning
It passes so fast
Folks wish it would last
Too quickly you’ve blown past your weaning

At two you ask ‘bout it all day
It seems like its all you can say
When folks ask you why
You say, "Look at the sky!"
Then run back outside and go play

As a teen you have oh so much more
Its abundance you seem to ignore
Don’t put things away
In a rush all damn day
Your wake is a slamming front door

At twenty you chase a degree
At thirty you want PhD
Lamenting its shortage
Paying your mortgage
Is this all my life’s meant to be?

At fifty you’ve climbed the top tier
Its ending you now start to fear
Your sixties get done
You’re now eighty-one
Each moment so precious, so dear

You reach the front gate and meet Peter
You tell him that nothing’d be sweeter
"Your wish is not rare
Ask again up the stairs,
That’s above my pay grade here as greeter"

"No, child, this here's where you land,
Now that you well understand
The tocks are finite
As are days and are nights"
Then He offers to you His big hand

"Time is on My Side"

© 2020 greg cain


greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Gypsy Rose Lee - I would wish the same, for sure, though I am convinced if I get to go north at all, I'll be there before her. Perhaps I'll ask if I can wait for her at the gate. Thanks for stopping by...

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on June 15, 2020:

Most creative and enjoyable. There is only one thing more I would wish that when I reach the Pearly Gates my soul mate is standing next to Saint Peter.

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Thanks, Ms. Dora. I do appreciate that. I appreciate also you taking the time to stop by and give it a read. Have a wonderful week!

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Thanks, Lora. I do believe that the teenager running out with the door slamming behind him/her is a good capture of the whirlwind I was as a kid. Now that you've mentioned it, I actually remember how and when this poem came to me the other day: I had just finished working on a project (fixing a bike tire) and when I was done, I went back to my workbench in the garage and hung the tools back on their hook above my tool bench. I remembered in that moment my dad getting frustrated with the teenage me, and also with the teenage grandson of his (my nephew) for never putting any used tools back where they came from. When I was 18 I'd have fixed that tire, dropped the wrench on the spot, hopped on the bike, rode away and been gone the rest of the day. I'd not have thought of the wrench again until my dad asked me days or a week later if I'd seen it. And so it goes...

Thanks for the thoughtful comment, Lora.

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Flourish - yes, I captured something other than myself, family, close friends with the PhD. I completed a few Masters' in my time, but I never pursued PhD. I worked at university, though, for a goodly number of years, and saw firsthand the financial and personal struggle that getting a terminal degree can be for some.

I don't like the idea of it all being a crapshoot, but at this point I believe it's exactly that for many of us.

Continue to take care and keep flourishing, Flourish. Thanks for stopping by for a look.

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Sha - if I'd have put more detail in here regarding my own chase for the undergraduate degree, it would have sounded just like your description of the (too much) fun with wild abandon.

And true: I hope to make 82 and beyond, as well, and don't intend to hook up with St. Peter for a goodly number of years. Thanks again for stopping by, Sha!

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 15, 2020:

Thanks, Ruby. Like most creations, this has a little bit of me and a little bit of close others in it, for sure.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on June 15, 2020:

It does go by that fast, and your sentiments are relatable. Your poem is entertaining, reflective and more. Good work!

Lora Hollings on June 12, 2020:

You certainly have captured in your wonderful poem, Greg, how quickly time passes. We reach middle age and wonder where the years went and hopefully, we take steps to do something meaningful with the rest of our time here. When we are adolescents and even in our twenties, we don’t seem to grasp how quickly the years slip by. Your poem reminds us of this important aspect of our lives. No one knows what the future may hold and thus we need to live life to the fullest right now. Excellent writing! Thanks for sharing.

FlourishAnyway from USA on June 12, 2020:

I liked this a lot! It even captured me with the PhD. I’ve calculated the age I should live to according to actuarial tables but they didn’t plan on the pandemic so it’s a crap shoot.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on June 12, 2020:

Wow, Box. You've put life's ride in such perspective. I didn't go to college so in my twenties and thirties I was seeking, and achieved, fun with wild abandon.

My mom will be eighty two this coming Friday, so neither one of us expect to view the pearly gates anytime soon.

I suspect you don't either.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on June 12, 2020:

This is outstanding poetry and so true. You captured the stages of life perfectly!

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 12, 2020:

Bill - your words carry great weight for me and I'm very, very appreciative. It is good for all of us to have you leading and cheerleading out here.

I love that song "100 Years," as well. It is indeed apropos. Happy Friday, Bill, and have a good weekend.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on June 12, 2020:

Loved it! I was humming "100 Years" by Five for Fighting while reading your clever and entertaining piece.

You are a fine writer, my friend.

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 12, 2020:

Thank you Lorna. And yes, I'm in here, too, as could be expected. Happy Friday, everyone!

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 12, 2020:

Thanks Ann, and thanks for stopping by to give it a go. I appreciate your comment.

greg cain (author) from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 12, 2020:

Thank you, LIz, and you are oh so right.

Lorna Lamon on June 11, 2020:

Clever writing Greg - I saw myself in some of the verses. You made me smile.

Ann Carr from SW England on June 11, 2020:

A little ditty to lighten our mood - very clever, Greg!


Liz Westwood from UK on June 11, 2020:

Lovely limerick, very witty. That's one date and time that we can't put on the calendar for the end of our time on earth.

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