by Thomas Davis
As old men sink into their silence, words
Become entangled in the memories
And moments that are like a flock of birds
So dense in time and space they start to freeze
The meanings that an old man means to say,
Or be, or clarify to those who’d listen
As if he still had thoughts that might convey
Some sense beyond the silence of his person.
Inside the living room I watch his eyes.
I feel inside myself and try to hear
The silence as its heaviness denies
Old age’s bucketful of pains and fear —
And as I watch I know the old men in their silence,
Their frozen faces and their look of patience.