I Am Seventy

Mansur Qureshi

I turned 70 last month. Our four year old granddaughter Aurora sent me a birthday card with my picture which she had specially drawn for the occasion. She has flattered me by giving me a mop of hair; the rest seems an accurate depiction. Here it is.



Naturally my attention has been drawn to all things related to old age: quotable quotes, jokes, poems and whatnot. Here is a small sample.

Quotes:

Old age is not too bad when you consider the alternative.
-- George Bernard Shaw

To me, old age is always fifteen years older than I am.
-- Bernard Baruch

In youth we run into difficulties; in old age difficulties run into us.
-- Josh Billings

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Joke :

What was its name?

Two elderly couples were enjoying a friendly conversation when one of the men asked the other, "Fred, how was the memory clinic you went to last month?"

"Outstanding," Fred replied. "They taught us all the latest psychological techniques -visualization, association- it made a huge difference for me."

"That's great! What was the name of the clinic?"

Fred went blank He thought and thought, but couldn't remember.

Then a smile broke across his face and he asked, "What do you call that flower with the long stem and thorns?"

"You mean a rose?"

"Yes, that's it!" He turned to his wife. . ."Rose, what was the name of that clinic?"
----

Poems :

Reflections by Lucy Blades

The other day, I happened by chance,
As I passed a mirror, to give it a glance
And I wondered who that old man could be,
Who, with his mouth wide open, was looking at me.

His bald head was sprinkled with a little grey fuzz,
And he wasn't at all handsome (like I always was)
He looked like a sack of mismated parts,
Put together without aid of instructions or charts.

And while I know that my shoulders don't slump,
This person's were misshapen in one ugly hump'
Now, if that was my image, I only can say,
They don't make mirrors like they did in my day.

----

Youth, Day, Old Age and Night by Walt Whitman

Youth, large, lusty, loving-youth full of grace, force, fascination,
Do you know that Old Age may come after you with equal grace,
force, fascination?
Day full-blown and splendid-day of the immense sun, action,
ambition, laughter,
The Night follows close with millions of suns, and sleep and
restoring darkness.

----

And Whatnot?

Urdu poetry lurks in the mind all the time and pops its head up on special occasions. Here is an almost untranslatable verse from that old sage Riaz Kherabadi for me to sign off with:

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