I understand how old men become soaks.
You read how others sail around the globe
or bicycle to India and back –
two cheers for them, or those who write a book,
or visit prisons, or who learn to cook...
It doesn’t take a major, lengthy probe:
if you’ve made work your be-all, then its lack
can send you down the pub, to join the blokes
who prop up bars, and set the world to rights,
each boring each with obsolete sound-bites.
You don’t go all at once right off the track.
At first, who knows, some might enjoy your jokes.
But soon you’d test the patience of a Job.
Still, one more round, and then home to the wife
(if she’s still there). And the rest of your life.
If you have any thoughts on this poem, Tom Vaughan would be
pleased to hear them.