Thursday, June 7, 2012

People Who Have Gone Before Me, by Kay Halsey

We all know that we are headed for “old age,” yet it is so easy to miss the lessons of those who have led the way. Here is a poem from Kay, now in her very active and youthful 90’s. Maybe, just maybe, we can learn something from her. ~ Bonnie

I’m so lucky that

Those older folks that I now see

And thought I’d never be

Remind me I never saw what really was

I visited “old folks’ homes” to sing as a campfire girl

But I don’t remember the limping, walking residents,

The slower pace and deliberate moves,

The urge to sit and rest a bit.

Of halted speaking, searching for a word

To tell of a joy or event from their memory

They’d like to share.

It makes me sad that I didn’t know

What the older people in their earlier lives

Did to make them happy.

Their special days and happier days

Were never recalled because I didn’t

Share and imagine what they thought fine.

I don’t regret the things I have done

But now I know I missed what I should have done

To see, to feel, to listen, to hear the music

Of their souls who have gone before me in former times.


  1. From Ginger ~
    Kay's poem is very thoughtful.

  2. From Charlotte ~

    Great insight

  3. Kay
    If only we knew then, how different life could be. I'm affraid that age is what brings on true wisdom. Lovely poem!

  4. Kay, your poem is insightful,thoughtful,and tender, and it reminds me of why our memoir group is such an extraordinary vehicle to move us to recall where we've been, and how we got to where we are, and all the stops along the way that made us who we are. Everything that you have written and shared with our beloved class has caused me to pause and look inside myself. I feel indebted to you for that gift.

  5. You give such a beautiful voice to thoughts I have myself. I never asked my father what made him happy when he was young. It is my loss.