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The Undercurrent

August 11, 2011

The Undercurrent

Swimming in the shallows after 62 years
he reminisced of that first time,
when against his mother’s wishes,
he waded with childhood friends
into the river’s cool waters,
on a hot summer day.

No thoughts of time,
even the hour their mothers had appointed
for their return home.
Oblivious to its passage -
a blessing of youth.

Now on this day – drawn here -
time was his only companion -
and his preoccupation.
Those childhood friends unavailable.
One a hip replacement,
another Parkinson’s,
the third a heart condition,
the fourth having already lost the race.

The flowing waters lullaby his mind.
He could see the landscapes, the portraits,
painted by his life’s strokes -
dulled with the effects of age
occasionally touched up.

He could still sense that first time together,
unconcerned about the rushing waters,
the future no anxiety.
Now having come full cycle,
there was no reason to look forward
the current’s undertow
was enough for him to handle.

Ray Brown

Consider purchasing my book of poems,“I Have His Letters Still” – Poetry of Everyday Life ($11.95). Available on Amazon at or purchase an autographed copy at

9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 11, 2011 8:36 am

    this poetry blog is very nice and very enjoyable what i have read so far ray from kevin in hampshire uk.

  2. Ray Brown permalink*
    August 11, 2011 9:37 am

    Thank you for reading and for your comments. I look forward to reading your blog.

  3. August 11, 2011 12:15 pm

    It is amazing how the passage of time alters our perspective of what is dangerous…this is a beautiful rememberance of youth.

  4. August 11, 2011 12:55 pm

    The third stanza is sad.
    A wonderful contrast of youth and age and passage of time.

  5. Ray Brown permalink*
    August 11, 2011 1:04 pm

    Thank you Charles

  6. Ray Brown permalink*
    August 11, 2011 1:07 pm

    Thank you Jessica. I look forward to becoming familiar with your own writing. “JP’s Poetry” –

  7. Judy De Sapio permalink
    August 11, 2011 4:13 pm

    This is so beautifully written – I felt like I was “swimming in the shallows.” Welcome back Ray.

  8. Anonymous permalink
    July 22, 2012 10:06 pm

    So many emotions of youth and age. Thank-you.

  9. Ray Brown permalink*
    April 28, 2013 10:14 pm

    I am sorry that I did not acknowledge your comment before now. I have been away from the Internet for awhile. I am appreciative of you taking the time to read and post.

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