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If I was Two and Twenty - after Algernon Charles Swinburne- A Match and Thomas Hood - A Catch

This time around is given,
as was the one before,
sins punished, sins forgiven,
who knows what 'lies' in store
in trace race mortals draw
till they withdraw, hence driven,
despite pride's battles striven,
life's finite thread is riven,
we wane, the pain is keen.
This time around is given,
till, wrinkled, we withdraw.

If I was two and twenty,
with soul mate just eighteen,
we'd pleasures taste aplenty
nor censorship, nor sentry
in future evergreen
ignoring landed gentry,
dirt urban elementary,
all options opened gently,
by temporal re-entry
stream energy dream clean.
If I was two and twenty,
life's partner just eighteen.

Then we might blow pollution
to smithereens and seed
some carbon-free solution,
climactic revolution
defeating human greed,
then growth would flow unending,
before, behind, here bending,
straightforwardly defending
minorities agreed
on aims and attributions
all nurturing shared need.

If life were what the rose is
without the thorns to boot,
true loves would link together
through bright or stormy weather
where heart with heart reposes
in bliss, each kiss new root.
From story uneventful
discarding trumps resentful
to glory existential
we'd dance to magic flute.
Door open never closes,
vain envy could confute.

If forty years were shedded
from fearful mortal frame,
with errors past all shredded
and motivations headed
towards no guilty shame,
we'd offer level-headed
approach to chips embedded
life's options multi-threaded,
from cancer free, unleaded
environment we'd claim
essential as clear-headed
we'd redesign life's game.

If life were what the rose is,
true Joy no longer mute.
Were life bud which encloses
enjoyment absolute,
then light as downy feather
we'd float above wild heather.
Unknown would be love's measure,
unending blissful pleasure,
eternity two treasure
unknown would be dispute.
Seeds sown bear fruit, what shows is
fair blossom's good repute.

The mirror life should show is
reflection to transmute
dust into gold, exp[l]oses
snake's apple, rotten fruit.
If thoughts, words, deeds, were ever
identical, life's tune
would harmonize discordant
vibrations, tongues concordant
would soften into sweetness
discovering completeness
yet ne'er obsessed by neatness
could conquer slander mordant;
temptations never-never,
and fly high as the moon.

If twenty two was granted
instead of forty more,
fresh forests could be planted
in paradise enchanted
'to each his needs', restore
opinion free, unslanted,
and equity implanted
as ideal by all wanted
without restrictions chanted
by vested interests sore,
from wiretaps unwarranted
to freedoms all adore.

If thought, words, deeds were never
a hot-air sky balloon.
If we were both immortal,
December mild as June
might be, we'd see life's summer
count each day in its number.
Life would be beauty blessing
each day full dinner dressing,
no lies to be confessing
eternal swim, no plumber
to pull the plug each mortal
fear drained from heart charts soon.

If illness idiopathic
was cured 'neath sun, stars, moon
Death sting-less, Life cocoon,
no human antipathic
as entente telepathic
removed fears psychopathic
we'd versify night, noon,
throw lifelines all find boon,
no conduct enigmatic
reactions harsh, dramatic,
could ever burst balloon
of fĂȘte and fun festoon.

If twenty two could focus
sage wisdom age confers,
defusing hocus-pocus
replacing slums with crocus
white, yellow, mauve, prefers,
inventing solar panel,
amusements multichannel
banish obese and scrannel,
end soft soap, fawning flannel.
In_gene_I_us new locus
which to just plan defers,
turns man, mad diplodocus,
to insight naught deters.

Some say: 'Delight may mingle
love, lust, but life, buffoon,
spins Time's wheel all too quickly,
today's bloom soon shades sickly,
tomorrow's tomb is single,
shores shown prove shoals and shingle.'
Their cares prove self-fulfilling,
with worries over-spilling
into haste's waste-chase chilling,
so rare their senses tingle.
and gloom flows out of noon,
all's vain! Life: mirage moon.
But we won't buy that tune!

While youth longs to be older
grasps opportunity
to test strengths, bigger, bolder,
advancing to unfold a
dream perfect to a tee,
Age dwells on lost youth, ponders
mistakes made as mind wanders
from joyful, novel wonders,
to doom gloom first responders
fear soon may fell life's tree.
Life's in eye of beholder,
no immortality
cold Fate our transient folder
will ever guarantee.

Were there no dearth of readers
on earth here, how delighting!
Our writing all adoring,
vocations pure restoring,
in high demand as breeders,
would poets every nighting
Gails brave, or Joys, or Ledas,
no dearth of readers sighting.

Regretfully our leaders'
priorities seem fighting,
backbiting and exporting,
exploiting and deporting,
so altruistic pleaders
must elsewhere underwriting
seek sustenance, indicting
lacklustre lusting leaders
whose all too frequent lapses
show judgement which collapses
when tested, which perhaps is
sign they fail all, the bleeders,
due more to faulty wiring
than that of their conceders.

If she were fairy ditty,
and I an airy rhyme,
we'd keep this up for ever,
nor think it very clever,
sense, nonsense, mix themes witty
until the end of time.
If she were fair[l]y pretty,
I not some hot-air rhyme,
But twenty-two? A pity
one can't go back in time,
and daily nitty gritty
seems far from rose sublime.
Fond meetings soon must sever,
from henceforth and forever.
With fields devoured by city
zen themes can't turn cat kitty,
spliced telomeres find kitty
soon spent, scarce worth a dime,
by evolution's climb.

If life were what the rose is
without the thorns to boot,
our loves would link together
in bright or stormy weather
where heart with heart reposes
in bliss, each kiss new root.
If life were, holy Moses!
a rose all could compute.

If, love's seeds sown, pretending
was classified as weed
then there would be no ending
of happiness to feed
shared passion overnightly
grown pyrotechnic brightly
as two through cues insightly
keyed to each other's need,
all bridges would be mending
endeavours all succeed.

Once love's seeds sown, descending
to fertile ground decreed,
we'd spend existence blending
our essences agreed,
see days spin fly-by-nightly
as we, together, tightly
can do no wrong but brightly
tired muscles nightly knead.
Fate, fortune, both befriending,
as on our way we speed.

In city, sandy shingle,
hopes rise, hot air balloon,
time-traveller's cartoon.
In town, or country dingle,
most bubble hopes burst quickly
on meeting cactus prickly,
birth's pride ride soon turns sickly,
lush locks, which flourished thickly,
fall, bride, groom, soon doomed loon.
All ends as empty jingle
for 'slippered pantaloon'.

Age page needs no defending,
dear reader, pray concede
this writer's coda screed.
true expertise well lending
No ruse, one rues contritely,
transforms age to eyes brightly
hued where hewed life-line's nightly
cut short for sluggard, sprightly.
The blues ensues, so, tightly,
attention pay as lightly
our white poetic steed
is reined in recommending
Your pen should now proceed.

(22 April 2010)

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