Saturday, 30 June 2012

When I am old, I shall wear purple ...

While photographing local poppies - the words of this familiar poem came to mind

Shropshire poppy fields on a summers day


When I am an old woman I shall wear purple

With a red hat that doesn't go, and doesn't suit me,
And I shall spend my pension
on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals,
and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I am tired,
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells,
And run my stick along the public railings,
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick the flowers in other people's gardens,
And learn to spit.
You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat,
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go,
Or only bread and pickle for a week,
And hoard pens and pencils and beer mats
and things in boxes.
But now we must have clothes that keep us dry,
And pay our rent and not swear in the street,
And set a good example for the children.
We will have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practise a little now?
So people who know me
are not too shocked and surprised,
When suddenly I am old
and start to wear purple! 

Jenny Joseph
(The poet and writer  Jenny_Joseph was born in 1932 in Birmingham England)

Perhaps it was the colour of the poppies that brought on this thought, or perhaps it was the activity of going about a field, taking random photos of poppies & being totally excited about the sheer beauty of them ...

At the annual Bridport Hat Festival bridport hat fest there is the ladies club who follow the tradition of wearing purple with red as immortalised in the poem ...

Bridport Hat Festival

Bridport Hat Festival 2011

This poem always touches a nerve - we all, to greater & lesser degrees, live the 'sobriety of youth', follow the conventions of  feeding and clothing the children, paying the bills & sometimes, just sometimes,  the person just gets a little lost in the conventionalities & constraints of our everyday lives.

But, with age comes the confidence to be much freerer, eccentric behaviour is tolerated, even encouraged & with it the individuality we might have lost along the way due to responsibilities of life ...

My maternal grandparents each had a maiden sister who spent a lot of time with us when we were growing up & they certainly enriched our lives with their eccentric individuality, throwing off the constraints to just be themselves ...

So whenever I look at my pictures of the poppies, I  remember the purple poppy ♥

Will you be wearing purple with a red hat when you grow older? I know I shall ....

Thanks for stopping by,
Dee ~♥~

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