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Healthy Aging   A Collection of Poems On Aging

Dedicated to all those who have helped me to survive

 Sally Love Saunders

February, 2020



The mirror used to be kind. 

Now it is like the mirror 
at the old amusement park

that twists and distorts 
me into grotesque forms. 

The senior discounts; 

Kleenex to wipe away sweat 
from hot flashes. 

~ Sally Love Saunders



I wish aging

Was a matter of going to a terminal

Then returning back-

Like the trains that go

From city to country

Then back.

~ Sally Love Saunders

We Need a Book About Dr. Spock


We need a book about Dr. Spock

On aging

Explaining our stages

What to expect

How to cope

How to enjoy. 

~ Sally Love Saunders

Aging All About Loss


Aging - all about loss

Like the fall off
 of artichoke leaves

Green leaves that support us

drop off,

Then what created our beauty

drops off

until the heart

of the artichoke - 

The best part.

~ Sally Love Saunders



Used to be...


Used to be I did what I wanted

Regardless of what parent said 

or teachers in study hall commanded

Now age 80

It is doctors who are dictating my time.

One says 20 minutes "do this"

One says 20 minutes "do that"

Charging voices in my head

I want to just push aside

Their orders 
and again be a wild child.

Now I'm just an obedient 
old lady

do this do that

~ Sally Love Saunders





Very full time body maintenance work

I'm feeling like the very busy beaver

at Brown Ledge Camp

whose whole existence 

plugging up holes
in the potentially declining lake.

If it wasn't for all his

plugging up leaks with logs,

the sinking lake would have disappeared.

So here I am busy going to doctors,

doing exercises

trying to eat healthy

Flossing, flossing flossing

To keep the lake of me 
full and alive.

Busy beaver am I 

Plugging only up the holes

of the sinking lake.

~ Sally Love Saunders



I am 80


I am 80

Already a bother

To young friends 
and family.

~ Sally Love Saunders



I'm 80 You Said


I'm 80 you said

but to me I'm a little kid

Playing dress up.

Have a mask of wrinkles

and a wig of white hair.

I'm PRETENDING to get tired

more than I really do


I'm dumber with technology

than the smart young techie kid

I really am.

I'm 80 you said

but to me I'm a little kid

Playing dress up.

~ Sally Love Saunders



Am I Getting Thick Skinned?


Am I getting thick skinned?

21st century snakeskin grew

Keeping me from flinching

When heard again my credit card
was hacked?

Taking being hacked in step.

It used to be I would be stressed

Think of it - telling friends

Now it seems kind of normal.

~ Sally Love Saunders



Remembering Thinking


Remembering thinking

and thinking

What will I be
when I grow up?

Would dream and rehearse

in great detail

a Broadway star?
or mother of six?

Now I am all grown up

Up being eighty

What do I have 
to look forward to

when I am more grown up?

A knee replacement ordeal

With an endless role to recovery??!

~ Sally Love Saunders



When Is



One doctor says 
"twice a day for two weeks"

My physical therapist says

"Every day do these exercises."

Dentist says 
"floss teeth"

So many orders

When is there time 
to just have time

to do as I please??? 

~ Sally Love Saunders

Johnny Appleseed poet

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