Monday, 21 September 2015

A Full Life


Two years ago a doctor told me that it was unrealistic for me, a fifty year old man, to want to live the sort of active life that I lived before my accident and that I should accept my lot.

To me his suggestion was like telling a lion to eat grass, it wasn't going to happen. I decided then and there that I had had enough of doctors and their drugs. Two years on I have just completed my first major goal.

I hope this poem might inspire someone else to grab the bull by the horns and find the courage to go for it.

A Full Life

They said;
"After this you'll be able to live a full life."
But what did they really mean?
How did these overweight, red faced,
middle age men define "live"?
I'd never run again.
I'd never climb, or swim or jump
Or live....
but in their view,
why would a fifty year old want to run, climb or jump?
They had consigned me to their bin
their 'has been' bin.
Leave life to the young,
accept the constraints of a failing body,
fade into the mass.
So I said "NO".
I threw away their drugs,
dug deep and fought to live life again.
Baby steps at first
then as meters turned to K's
I felt the real me rise again.
Quiet determination at first
and then a blazing;
"I CAN"
"I WILL"
as the pain burned deeper
the fire within grew
and the "I CAN"
became "I DID"
and now I am ready;
To LIVE.

John Carré Buchanan
02 September 2015

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

A Lucid Moment


When I started this poem I intended to examine the frustrations of growing old, losing one’s physical abilities and being left with only memories. As I wrote I realised that a far greater tragedy would be to know that you are losing those memories. I hope you like the poem;

A Lucid Moment

I never thought I'd live so long,
I didn't really plan to
I lived my life at full speed
taking risks I aught not to.

I jumped from planes
and scaled tall cliffs
I dived beneath the sea
I even stood in foreign lands
while people shot at me.

I climbed tall mountains
crossed deserts wide,
and forded rivers deep.
I hacked a path through jungles
where scary critters creep.

I loved once
with burning fire
but sickness took my heart’s desire
and I was left to live alone
with a broken heart, turned to stone.

Yes,
I planned to be a candle bright
to live life short and sweet.
but now I have the tee-shirt
life ain't half as neat.

I had a young man’s mind
In an old man’s frame
I wanted to play;
Not remember the game.

Yet now life’s dealt its cruellest blow
It stole memories formed long ago
and left me alone to sit and stare,
a frail old man
in a green armchair.

John Carré Buchanan
16 September 2015




This poem is linked to Poets United.

Friday, 4 September 2015

The Weekly Shop


Walking around a supermarket the other day, I couldn’t help overhear a couple of women complaining vociferously about various items not being available on the shelves. This proved to be the spark for the following poem, I hope you like it.

The Weekly Shop

Keen bright eyes take careful aim
as the long thin pipe seeks hidden game.
Cheeks bulge, then, with a puff,
the speeding dart finds the scruff.
Deadly toxins still the beast
the hunter’s earned his next feast.

With smoking leaves and homemade axe,
high on the cliff, a young man hacks.
Angry voices fill the air
as honey bees protect their lair.
The raider drops his hard won prize
towards his family’s upturned eyes.

With nimble fingers they pluck at shrubs
collecting berries, leaves and grubs
or use sharp sticks to dig the soil
for roots and tubers they really toil.
Termite, lizard, frog and beetle
are normal fare for many people.

Heavy plant roars and rumbles
as from its bowels rubbish tumbles.
Across the piles of fetid waste
figures dash with frenzied haste
to gather scraps, with naked hands,
that filled the city’s garbage cans.

A wonky wheel on the trolley
woke her babe which sucks a dummy.
She moves along the sterile aisle
and flashes staff a plastic smile,
selects produce that bears no scar,
then pays and races to her car.

John Carré Buchanan
04 September 2015


This poem is linked to Poets United.