Sometimes being in ones 70’s is a uniquely weird experience. I often wonder if strange things happen simply because I’m getting older, or if life in general is just really bizarre. Perhaps people just notice things more clearly as they age.
Today it all began when I heard the sound of rain on the back window of my condo, and I rushed to check it out just to make sure there wasn’t a leak coming from the unit above me. My cat, Mr. Darcy was sitting on the dresser totally mesmerized by humongous droplets colliding against the glass.
And as the rain become increasingly louder, for some reason I started to recite, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” putting extra emphasis on, “Water water everywhere nor any drop to drink”, all while Mr. Darcy rubbed his furry face in mine.
I then proceeded to tell him about Samuel Taylor Coleridge (the poem’s author), and about all the Romantic poets. Obviously, my cat was genuinely interested in my literary lesson…😻
But, I began to wonder how I could recall and recite an epic poem (lyrical ballad) that I learned back in high school, when I have difficulty remembering what I ate for breakfast this morning. I even had to rack my brain this afternoon to recall if I put my clothes in the dryer. And yet, somehow I could still recall large portions of the longest poem Coleridge ever wrote.
How is it that I can vividly recount information about Byron, Shelly, Keats, Blake and Wordsworth, and even giggle like a school girl when I realize I STILL have a bit of a crush on George Gordon Byron,(Aka Lord Byron)who died in 1824 after writing such magical lines as, “She walks in beauty,like the night of cloudless climes and starry skies…”.
But then I’ll forget whether or not I took my allergy pill today. Sheesh!
Is it because I’m 71? Or is it because the breathtaking beauty of perfectly coordinated words are so exquisite, that once they are heard, they can never be forgotten?
Can it be that exceptional poetry (or prose) endures throughout the centuries and stays within the souls of people it transforms? Does it linger on in the cosmos for eternity? My cat, Mr. Darcy thinks that is the case, and so do I.
Today the rest of America is thinking about the super bowl. But not me.
No, I am remembering… “Though the heart be still as loving, And the moon be still as bright…”
By the way, don’t you just love a cat who enjoys poetry?😻😻