The Old Man and His Wife

The house is warm, the fire lit
And I by the fire sit
Nodding as a metronome

Besides me rocks my old wife
With wrinkled cheeks as soft
And fair and rosy red

Though white her hair,
As when first she entered
The marriage bed

Go quickly now, when you go
And quietly, while I sleep
And do not know

The potion in your evening tea
Will end your unending misery
And take with it, yes,

The very heart of me

Will you speak for me
In Eternity
Before God’s Golden Throne

Mine will be the harder death
When I awake


– Irving Karchmar,  © 1996

Note:  This poem was written in an odd mood of reverie just after Oregon passed the Physician assisted Death with Dignity law.

3 Responses to The Old Man and His Wife

  1. Jayasri says:

    Love it, Irving! My husband and I are reaching that time of life.

  2. Mercy Rules says:

    I almost got tears in my eyes. This speaks very deeply to my heart.

  3. Irving says:

    Thank you, Jayasri and Mercy, for your kind comments. The poem literally came like Athena, fully formed from my head.

    Ya Haqq!

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