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A Mortician’s “Somber” Reflections

Cradle to grave, the destiny of man
is one from which there’s no escape.
Born he was without teeth in his gums
but it is the tooth of time that tears and gnaws.

Aging gracefully, oh, such fleeting dream;
man finds himself prisoner of old age.
Dogs may grow old without showing their age--
some old ones still run, but this one lies still.

This shadow of man, once stout,
now his legs are withered and stiff;
the skin is loose and saggy like that
of a plucked goose. The neck

would be too weak to hold the head erect.
Once he was a youth with a full head of hair,
but now, one finds one only here or there,
not worthy of clippers and shears--

except for those bristles in nose and ear.
Well--at last he is beyond all earthly care.
I serve him by doing what I do best--
Hot diggity dang! now that guy looks good!

Style / type: 
Free verse
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I appreciate moderate constructive criticism
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Not Explicit Content


that the many morticians that serve the dead feel as you have portrayed them. The reflections of the mortician, must give them a sense of peace and comfort; to know that they have done their best in making the deceased look the best as he could.
I wonder if they have those in their profession that they look up to and would like to have do their last rites of make-up?
A weird thought I guess. Just wondering. I like the little bit of levity at the end; not a bit of disrespect, just a little pride.
~ Geez.

It seems that the days and hours that people
are available for chatroom are staggered and
not a good match for most everyone. How about
if everyone just shows up at the door, whenever
they have a few free minutes?

Hello, Jerry,
Interesting! I would think it would take a specific type of person / personality to become a mortician. A "people" person for sure! I agree with Geezer, I sense the pride within his reflections at the end.

thanks for reading my p-p-p-poem. I don't know what possessed me to dwell on such a morbid subject, whereas I should write about sugar plum fairies that presently dance through my mind. Thanks again,
Jerry Van

author comment

Thank you for the comment; I know a dozen undertaker jokes, but somehow this doesn't seem the right time to spring them on you; so, next time I'll do better. Let me just tell you what a fellow who worked in that profession used to say: tomorrow we will "plant" so-and-so's-mother- in law, or such, which never failed to crack me up. Thanks, Geezer;
Jerry Van.

author comment

A deep reflection, indeed. Life is really not the superficiality the world revels in, but a reality rooted in the passage of time. Thanks for sharing.

Bathe yourself with poetry and let the world go to pieces.

I thank you for your profoundly wise words and for reading, good poetry friend.
Jerry Van

author comment
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