‘I wish that I could be young again,’
He sighed from his easy chair,
Watching the film he’d made back then
When there was still time to spare.
‘Why would you want to go back to that,’
His wife said, ‘What about me?
We hadn’t met when you made that film
Back in 1963.’
Margaret lit an incense stick
And sandalwood filled the air,
A heavy aroma filled the room
As Derek continued to stare.
And there was his wife, at seventeen,
Just walking along the pier,
Should he go up and say hello.
Or should he just disappear?
He suddenly felt so fit, and light,
He hadn’t felt that for years,
Then turned to look at his ageing wife
As her eyes all filled with tears.
‘You wouldn’t pick me again,’ she said,
‘Not knowing what you know now,’
He would have replied, but love was dead,
Had died, he didn’t know how.
‘I wouldn’t know what I’d do again,
Given the self-same choice,’
‘Surely you would,’ said Margaret then,
‘You would have chosen Joyce.’
He thought of Joyce in the winter barn
As she rolled with him in the hay,
What was the point that she’d said goodbye,
And ended up going away?
‘You were still going with Gordon then,’
He said, as if in reply,
‘I was surprised that you went with me,
You said that you loved the guy.’
But Margaret’s tears were flowing now
And rolling along each cheek,
She should have been true to Gordon, but
He’d gone away for a week.
‘Life is just full of ironies,’
He said, while stroking her hair,
‘There was a moment, back in time,
When you were suddenly there.
I thought that you cared, and I did too,
We both of us made a choice.’
Too little, too late, to think it now,
For Gordon had married Joyce.
David Lewis Paget