Portrait of an Old Woman

by M.U.   May 31, 2016

You told me she died peacefully -
With her lips slightly stretched
(Not too far, not too wide), as in a smile:
Like the local road we always walked
Till we reached home.

And those wrinkles next to her eyes
(I remember them too) -
You said you wondered
How many teardrops passed by them:
As rivers, quick to dry, leaving her
A day older.

How many shivering hands has she once held? -
Wanting to keep them warm -
While they grew pained, cold and stiff,
As their owners disappeared forever (perhaps);

Till, finally, her quivering hands
Grew tired and limp.


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Latest Comments

  • 2 years ago

    by Maple Tree

    Judge Comment:

    Generally, in society- People dont stop to take the time of just how beautiful and elderly woman is.... the lines of a life well lived or perhaps the struggles.

    This poem captivated me... a lovely portrait I could see and read!

  • 2 years ago

    by hiraeth

    Judging Comment:

    I'm being overly scrupulous here, but the capitalizations of every line is a smidge off-putting, I know it happens because of auto-correct (if only word-processors had a template for poetry and just stop auto-correcting and changing the format up, anyways I digress). The tongue-in cheek reference to goldilocks in the introductory stanza sets the theme of the poem up quite well; yearning. The old woman yearns to comfort others, yearns to live (both in the literal and metaphorical sense) until the yearning is no more

  • 2 years ago

    by Brenda

    Beautifully written-a lovely write for a lovely woman, well done-

  • 2 years ago

    by Em

    This is a truly sad yet beautifully written piece. Your descriptive and structure make it most enjoyable to read.

    All the best, Em

  • 2 years ago

    by Ben Pickard


    This is an excellent piece, written very delicately. I love the simile used in the first stanza comparing her mouth to "the local road (you) always walked."
    The scatterings of parenthesis work nicely as well - I always feel they add to the delicacy of a poem such as this.

    Well done and all the best