Quaint Old Vale of Tears

(Reynold D. Philipsek)

My Roman Catholic upbringing and 12 years of parochial education still shows some resonance.

This verse recalls the congregational recitation of a Rosary or Novena where the priest would intone a short prayer and the congregation would reply with a repeated response in a low monotone.

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Gone the halcyon days I trod the boards to mighty cheers
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

These days the music of my youth only brings a ringing to my ears
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

And ennui’s no longer assuaged by copious whiskey shots and beers
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

And self-image upheld by vampire-like avoidance of all mirrors
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

As fine young girls return wry smiles with condescending sneers
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

And every little ache and pain stirs some primal mortal fears
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

It’s hard to resign yourself to the accumulation of the years
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

So let’s devise some slick diversion as the grim reaper slowly nears
More trials and tribulations in this quaint old vale of tears

The First Hundred Years

(Reynold D. Philipsek)
I have been writing a “poem” a day lately for a small private collection I am calling, “Verse in the Time of Covid.” Here’s one of the latest.

I’m not as smart as I used to think
But greying hair did not dim the light
I no longer feel I’m on the brink
of genius when merely bright

I now blush with mighty shame
when I look back on brazen days
Thank God I have now lived long enough
to amend those sophomoric ways

The folly of youth can be forgiven
if followed by mature repose
But woe to those who blindly persist
because then true foolishness grows

“There is no fool like an old fool”
I never want to hear that said
behind my back or when I depart
That thought fills me with dread

I now fondly remember my Uncle Dave 
His words now ring wise and clear
“The first hundred years are the roughest,” he said
Those words seem wiser every year

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