‘If you are old and have the shakes
If all your bones are full of aches,
If you can hardly walk at all,
If living drives you up the wall,
If you’re a grump and full of spite,
If you’re a human parasite,
Your eyes will shine, your hair will grow,
Your face and skin will start to glow,
Your rotten teeth will all drop out
And in their place new teeth will sprout.
Those rolls of fat around your hips
Will vanish, and your wrinkled lips
Will get so soft and rosy–pink
That all the boys will smile and wink
And whisper secretly that this
Is just the girl they want to kiss!
But wait! For that is not the most
Important thing of which to boast.
Good looks you’ll have, we’ve told you so,
But looks aren’t everything, you know.
Each pill, as well, to you will give
So come, old friends, and do what’s right!
Let’s make your lives as bright as bright!
Let’s take a dose of this delight!
This heavenly magic dynamite!
You can’t go wrong, you must go right!
Poet: Roald Dahl

There is no doubt that I am totally devoted, in spite of my age, to the poetry of Roald Dahl.  I have studied and pursued the realities of his life and the life of his former wife Patricia Neal. Patricia Neal for me was one of the most brilliant actresses and when her book ‘As I am’ was published I read it over and over. She was one of the bravest of women. Within their lives together were so many complexities. She overcame so many obstacles in her life and  of course there was the ever present reality of a silent unrequited love. There is nothing so sad….yet like Katherine. Hepburn she accepted that in this lifetime things won’t happen as the heart so deeply desires. It never stopped them from loving…they accepted with grace the placing of the pieces on the ‘chessboard of life’.
This poem deals with age…I need that now!!! It would be a grand solution to realities. Especially the added years part. I want to live to see extra terrestrial contact….I know we are not alone.  How this theory equates with God, the all supreme creator of mankind , is quite another matter.

Above is a photo of the incomparable Patricia Neal

Here is another favourite Roald Dahl poem

‘This famous wicked little tale
Should never have been put on sale
It is a mystery to me
Why loving parents cannot see
That this is actually a book
About a brazen little crook…’

‘…Now just imagine how you’d feel
If you had cooked a lovely meal,
Delicious porridge, steaming hot,hi
Fresh coffee in the coffee pot,
With maybe toast and marmalade,
The table beautifully laid,
One place for you and one for dad,
Another for your little lad.
Then dad cries, ‘Golly–gosh! Gee whizz!
‘Oh cripes! How hot this porridge is!
‘Let’s take a walk along the street
‘Until it’s cool enough to eat.’
He adds, ‘An early morning stroll
‘Is good for people on the whole.
‘It makes your appetite improve
‘It also helps your bowels move.’
No proper wife would dare to question
Such a sensible suggestion,
Above all not at breakfast–time
When men are seldom at their prime.
No sooner are you down the road
Than Goldilocks, that little toad
That nosey thieving little louse,
Comes sneaking in your empty house….’

‘…(Here comes the next catastrophe.)
Most educated people choose
To rid themselves of socks and shoes
Before they clamber into bed.
But Goldie didn’t give a shred.
Her filthy shoes were thick with grime,
And mud and mush and slush and slime.
Worse still, upon the heel of one
Was something that a dog had done.
I say once more, what would you think
If all this horrid dirt and stink
Was smeared upon your eiderdown
By this revolting little clown?
(The famous story has no clues
To show the girl removed her shoes.)

Oh, what a tale of crime on crime!
Let’s check it for a second time.

Crime One, the prosecution’s case:
She breaks and enters someone’s place.

Crime Two, the prosecutor notes:
She steals a bowl of porridge oats.

Crime Three: She breaks a precious chair
Belonging to the Baby Bear.

Crime Four: She smears each spotless sheet
With filthy messes from her feet.

A judge would say without a blink,
‘Ten years hard labour in the clink!’
But in the book, as you will see,
The little beast gets off scot–free,
While tiny children near and far
Shout ‘Goody–good! Hooray! Hurrah!’
‘Poor darling Goldilocks!’ they say,
‘Thank goodness that she got away!’
Myself, I think I’d rather send
Young Goldie to a sticky end.
‘Oh daddy!’ cried the Baby Bear,
‘My porridge gone! It isn’t fair!’
‘Then go upstairs,’ the Big Bear said,
‘Your porridge is upon the bed
‘But as it’s inside mademoiselle,
‘You’ll have to eat her up as well.’
Poet: Roald Dahl
Of all the children stores my mother read to me Goldilocks and the Three Bears was the one I didn’t want to listen to at all and Beauty and the Beast was the one I loved the most. Pchychiatrists when they try to put a portfolio to get of your troubled mind often ask about favourite characters and stories from childhood…the answers help to define who one is as a person. Kind of…unless one is psychotic.!!!