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Poem: The Old Phonograph Plays

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The Old Phonograph Plays
by Miriam M. Wynn
If I could relive the times when 
You and I were happy, 
I would close my eyes 
And hear the music 
From the old phonograph you used to play.
The old songs you used to play,
The old ones you used to play for me
To drive away the night . . . 

But, time is everything now.
My bones are brittle 
And I am weak.
Old ghosts are frothy mists around me;
Echoed voices are chants trapped in the walls-- 

Your scent still stains my pillows, 
Ever reminding me of you; 
The Dowager's Lace on my bed linens crumple
As I reach out with aged fingers 
That seem to be turning yellow with age.
Yellow as the linens that cloak my life-- 

All the children are long gone now; 
Our grandchildren never visit. 
There is only the scent of old lives 
And old promises,
Old music, old parties, 
Old loves . . . 

The candlelight flickers on the picture frames, 
I see the haunted eyes of 
Black and white photographs 
Turning amber, 
With time. 

By myself, lost in these sighing walls, 
Alone, listening to old memories, 
I recall and I remember . . . 
And there is so much I tried to forget, 
And there is only so much I regret-- 

And our children, darling, 
They never do come, 
They never do visit, our loved ones; 
And their children, our grandchildren, 
I've seen them only in pictures-- 
Only in pictures, 
As I see you now. 

So, I remain enclosed, lost in this 
Time capsule, 
Where the weathered walls echo across time 
With aged voices; 
And I remember you . . 
Remember love. . . 
And you. 

And I try to remember 
When I was once happy.
When you chased away the night 
With your love and caresses, 
And the old phonograph plays 
Those swing dance songs 
And then you play a 
Sultry orchestra that 
Seduces me . . . 

And I dance in your arms, 
Dressed in silk and chiffon and satin, 
And you look like a prince in 
Your stylish tuxedo suit-- 

We dance and I remember, 
As the old phonograph plays-- 

Sitting on the antique couch, 
I remember you-- 

Lost in the dust, 
I return to you-- 

And to the old happiness, long gone, 
That you and I, my love, 
Once knew . . .

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