Down But Not (Yet) Out

One minute
you’re leaving the supermarket
balancing a satchel of groceries
and a pumpkin pie
the next you’re down
I mean all the way down
splayed on the concrete
accepting a much-older gentleman’s hand
to hoist back to your feet

In this moment you realize
maybe you’ve reached a new life stage
the falling-down-needing-help level
and it sinks in
that you’re no longer as strong
as you always thought you were
in fact you’d be totally useless
in the coming apocalypse
zombie or otherwise

You ponder this development
already in pain
from just this one episode
as you shakily limp away and drive
but also giving many thanks
because you didn’t hit your head
you didn’t break your hip
and most importantly
the pumpkin pie is unscathed

Argh! #22 of 30 Poems in November to benefit the Center for New Americans. Today’s theme is ZOMBIES.


  1. I don't know if it's there's an added dimension to musing on aging in poems, because our body's fate and our constructions are bound together. At some point craft replaces magic and then silence seeps in. But here the reader falls with the writer, enrapt with the off-camera descent of the pumpkin pie. It's great we're afforded near misses before the big one nails us. A great assortment of Poems in November you've brought forth -- and wonderful your kids have been along for the ride. (That comedy/tragedy pic in the challenge is what got me -- how prescient...)

    1. Ah... yes to all of the above. This fall really happened in slow motion, as stuff like this tends to do. Much concern for the pie. :)
      Not sure if you will get this reference but also on the topic of aging, we went to see the new Pixar/Disney film Coco. Which brought forth Toy Story 3 level sobbing from yours truly. Whoa.

  2. I just came from my Mother in Law were we go every Sunday to cook a dinner and take a walk... She wouldn't get out if it wasn't for us, she has been through the falling and breaking of hips.

    1. Yes... truly I am grateful as this was a hard fall (I'm still achey several days later) but I did not break a hip. That is the worst, I know. Keep helping her walk, that is so good.

  3. Oh this is all so amazing - especially that unscathed pumpkin pie!! ❤

  4. Blame the slippery sidewalks of life.. you're no where near needing the helping hand phase yet.
    And on another note.. I am in awe of your poem a day promise, still going strong, for a cause you believe in. Brava.

  5. wow, very strong, that slow unexpected betrayal of age.
    MNL, cactus haiku

  6. Dad once said to me, "Jim, everyone falls." He thought about five times a year. A bit much, but I am more of a believer in his first advisory as I age. This was fun reading, sorry it had to happen for real to you. BTW, I generally end up bloody because of blood thinner and aspirin doses that I take.

    1. And fine for the prompt words, thank you for subbing. All seem to be fun type.

  7. My goodness this is good! Especially like; "but also giving many thanks because you didn't hit your head you didn't break your hip and most importantly the pumpkin pie is unscathed."

  8. In the end, that's all we have left--being grateful that we didn't cracked our skulls and bled all over the place, which would just make the zombies get there sooner.


Thank you for sharing your thoughts!