Still dreaming

3o wasn’t a big deal for me. As I said in my birthday post, I generally quite enoy getting older and am still holding out hope that one day I’ll be old enough to be taken seriously. But I have to say that so far I have not worn 33 as comfortably as previous ages. I am starting to rethink my self-image: am I who I think I am? Or am I still operating on assumptions that are no longer valid? Sometimes I feel like I have lost all the opportunities of youth but not yet gained the wisdom that comes with age and am just sitting here, in the middle, staring into space.

This is the chirpy subject of this week’s poem.

Still Dreaming

When I’m not looking and just living
I think I am still young, sometimes,
too young to have two little children,
to own a house or read The Times.

I imagine I’m still standing
on the brink of life, still waiting
for the show to start
the future open, nothing decided
full of potential, thinking
the world is holding its breath
for me
waiting for me
and what I have to say.

I am still dreaming
of a greater life
than this.

When I look into my rear view mirror
I look old sometimes, and cringe in shame
at my knee high boots and miniskirts
and my dreams of literary fame.

I had my chance and made my choices
ships have sailed and trains been missed
tethered to domestic life now
plans for writing interrupted
by a sudden need to snooze
or by my miniature muse
who says nuff puter, Mummy,
calling me to feed his dreams
to nurture his potential
and ambitions
not my own.

I am still dreaming
of a greater life
than this.

And in this dream I see you laughing
You say I haven’t understood
You’re only thirty-three, you tell me,
It’s only starting to get good.

You spent all these years in practice
while I built this life for you
Now enjoy it and get writing
it’s what I meant for you to do.

Woman, writer, mother, wife
there really is no greater life
the future will be ever gleaming
just as long as you keep dreaming.

(c) Judith Kingston 2013

Linking up to Prose for Thought and I am Me.

Prose for Thought
I am me

25 responses

  1. Pingback: Still dreaming | sueshan123

  2. We both seem to think very similarly! I just posted on my blog about finding myself again.I am 30 in september and so I too am thinking about that long list in my head of things I want to achieve, or haven’t achieved. Lovely x

    • That’s the second time we’ve done that! I wonder what next week will bring… And let’s not give up on that long list. Plenty more time to do all we want(ed) to do.

    • Well then I have achieved my aim in writing, which is to make the reader go: “Ah, that is exactly how I feel.”

      Maybe whatever is just out of reach always seems that much more glamorous because we are not there. Whenever we get anywhere with our ambitions, that stage just seems normal because it is where we are, and something else, just around the corner, seems like what we want and where we’d like to be.

    • It does sometimes feel like time is running away and we can’t keep up. But we are still young! Let’s not give up yet. 🙂

    • Thanks! I almost sent it to you first before posting, as I had some troubles with the metre/rhythm, but managed to work it out by reading aloud – d’oh!

  3. Judith, this is lovely. And you have most certainly met your desire, in that I can honestly say I have felt that way too. (I particularly love the bit about cringing in mini skirt & boots – please tell me that’s still acceptable??!!)
    I envy the fact that you *do* know what you want to do…I keep thinking to myself, ‘what shall I be when I grow up?’.
    A great poem xx

    • Yes yes yes! Mini skirts are still acceptable! Just brazen it out! I think we start thinking we’re mutton dressed as lamb much too early in life.
      What are your options for when you grown up? 🙂

  4. This is absolutely beautiful. I’m 36 and it really does feel like there’s still better to come. My 30s have been a defining decade for me so far but yes, I’d love the youthful looks of my 20s. Thank you so much for linking up. A wonderful post.

    • I suppose it would be a bit sad if we get to 36 and that’s it for all the good bits in life! Here’s to what’s still to come!

  5. Lovely words Judith, I know that feeling too… a bit of a want in me, as my gran would say. But we need dreams, for without them we would quickly grow old indeed. So loved the italic section of this poem xx

    • Thanks! I think I was already worried I was over the hill when i was 10 and my parents gave me a little book written by a nine year old for my birthday. It was meant as encouragement but I was gutted that someone younger than me had already been published!

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