Life by Dozens

A dozen years of education; potty training, GSEs
Fleeting friendships; boring lessons; tiny world of Bs and Ds.
Clock-ruled, regular and guided – living like a train or tram –
Advised, directed, punished – fated – concealing what I really am.

A second dozen; freedom; power; jingling pockets; love on wheels.
Choosing, losing; seeing clearer visions of Time that quickly steals
This age of innocence awakening; age of finding where it’s at;
Age of exploration – ferries, planes and planning; finding a flat.

Then the dreaded noughty landmarks – placards haunt each kind roadside –
“Bill is 30″ – “Carol’s Forty!” Un-friends will not let facts hide.
Jobs, careers or simply work; partner problems; children; money
Mortgages and dull insurance… Middle-age is quite unfunny.

Another dozen sees you orphaned – maybe richer, maybe not;
Reaching for your pinnacles or vainly trying to hide your pot!
Jogging, eating less and buying wines to savour and enjoy.
(Gone the lager years and fags). Dreams of when you were a boy…

Saga years of leisured time – library-browsing – flights abroad;
Seeing corners left unseen before St Gabriel sounds your chord.
Concert-going; old friends’ funerals; intimations of life’s end
Fast and ever faster coming; (not my turn yet – fates forfend.)

The Final Dozens interspersed with dozes by the fire
Or forty winks on sofas while trying to hear a choir.
Preoccupied with grandchildren and ailments that keep nagging;
Right-wing views on everything – What, him? The man needs gagging!
I’ll string ’em all up. Send them home. It’s not like that today.
These Euro-Common-computer-bombs! In my time they weren’t Gay!”

Thus Shakespeare’s slippered pantaloon enjoys Life’s final age.
Are we all just mice on a treadmill? Well, who’s got the key to the cage?