Old Man Musterer, poetry by Red Tussock at Spillwords.com
Rafael Leao

Old Man Musterer

Old Man Musterer

written by: Red Tussock



The gentle patter of rain on the roof,
In the middle of a wet indolent Otago day,
We do nothing on these days,
Procrastinate like chooks afraid of dampened feathers.
I wonder what he does these days,
Sitting in his lounge chair and fussing over,
Remote controls wondering why,
The old controllers won’t work with the new TV.
Did he look up at all too distant Red Tussock gullies,
To the rolling hills that he could once have danced across,
With occasional shrill whistled command at recalcitrant dog or two,
Did he see the Southerly clouds roll in and bow his head to rest?
He sits alone a lot nowadays,
Visited faithfully by great friends made long ago,
His stroke weakened leg still able to control a forward step or two,
Stoic and insufferably pleasant given the circumstance,
I have spent many an hour sitting with him,
Catching up on all the news he gleans like an SIS mole,
From real estate agents and doctors and nurses met,
During his mobility scooter enhanced missions about the town.
His new pulmonary arteries implanted brilliantly last winter,
Keep pumping the life around his body,
Causing him able to smile a wry smile of yet another victory over death,
Often he says he is weary and ready now, but the old musterer’s eyes don’t say it yet.

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