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Ageing Schoolmaster by Vernon Scannell

And now another autumn morning finds me
With chalk dust on my sleeve and in my breath,
Preoccupied with vague, habitual speculation
On the huge inevitability of death.

Not wholly wretched, yet knowing absolutely
That I shall never reacquaint myself with joy,
I sniff the smell of ink and chalk and my mortality
And think of when I rolled, a gormless boy,

And rollicked round the playground of my hours,
And wonder when precisely tolled the bell
Which summoned me from summer liberties
And brought me to this chill autumnal cell

From which I gaze upon the april faces
That gleam before me, like apples ranged on shelves,
And yet I feel no pinch or prick of envy
Nor would I have them know their sentenced selves.

With careful effort I can separate the faces,
The dull, the clever, the various shapes and sizes,
But in the autumn shades I find I only
Brood upon death, who carries off all the prizes.

—————

The End

And that’s the End of the Poem

© Poetry Monster, 2021.

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Some external links: The Bat’s Poetry Cave. — Fledermaus’s poetry site. Talking Writing Monster. — the irreverent and irrelevant chatter on subjects both serious and not quite. A free for all board. You can scribble anything on it without registration (but it doesn’t let spammers in). You can even post your poems. Qwant.com. — a search engine from France. It’s an alternative because there are a few alternatives, like Bing, Duckduckgo, and Ecosia. And there is Yandex, the ultimate language-oriented search engine for the Russophone world. Commercial Links: Russian Commerce – the foreign trade assistance agency Other links: Poems and poetry in Russian (if you are reading this in English, as you obviously are, then you’d have to switch the language, the language switch is on the menu. More on languages)

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