Those Times Ago

This poem is in response to Gooseberry Garden Poetry Picnic #15’s prompt. They ask for poems about November, winter, hope and change, and since I don’t do winter, and have no special attachment to November, I put this one together about hope. It’s sad, and just so y’all know, I am not sad. In fact I am very much at peace and I have great hope for the future. I do, however, often look longingly at the way things used to be. I think we all tend to do that. I hope you enjoy the poem.

Those Times Ago 


Eyes closed, I smiled and imagined

A full moon hanging low in the sky

Looking like a shiny pearl button

On a dandy cowboy’s shirt


Sequin stars glittered

On a blouse of blue-black silk

In the distance cattle lowed

As coyotes yipped and howled


When I opened my eyes

It all faded to cold hard truth

The hot dry grass on my neck

And burning tears I wouldn’t let fall


City traffic whirred nearby

Distant sirens pierced the night

A neighbor screamed angrily

At her laughing children


I gazed up at the dingy sky

Closed my eyes and tried to recall

Those times so long ago

When hope still lived within me


Times when stars twinkled

The man in the moon smiled

And parents, tired from their day

Murmured and chuckled softly


Gliding in the old wooden swing

Smiling, looking forward to tomorrow

While in the moon-shadow of a tree

Children tittered secret laughter


I wondered when the world had changed

And wished we could go back

To when life was simple; those times ago

When hope was more than just a word


Copyright © 2011 C. Mashburn

Shared on Gooseberry Garden Poetry Picnic #15


  1. yes, the past is so much enjoyable sometimes 🙂 there is this sadness to the piece that evokes longing. Nicely done!
    my entry:

  2. Morning said

    beautiful imaginations,

    the imagery is dreamy and beautiful with moon and nature elements in it.


  3. “I wondered when the world had changed

    And wished we could go back

    To when life was simple; those times ago

    When hope was more than just a word”

    …deep words that evokes nostalgia.

    This is a wonderful poem.

  4. Zoe said

    I love your moon imagery. This has a very nostaglic feel to it that pulls at the heart strings. Beautifully written.

  5. The rat race with the love of money being the new God to so many, has taken over everything, including compassion and kindness. It’s a shame we can’t go back to those kinder days.I just hope humanity somehow gains it’s global love and compassion back somehow.
    Lovely thoughts.

    • So true, Dreamer. And, sadly, as is often said, the rats are winning.
      Thank you for the thought-filled comments! They are very much appreciated!

  6. terri0729 said

    Beautifully done Charlie!!! That’s where I am right now, wishing for a simpler time 🙂 though I do cling to my hope that it’s right around the corner, it sometimes seems to be only a “word” used. Peace, love and blessings, Terri

    • Well, while a may wax poetic and look back on simpler times, I am–we are–where we are, and I am content to do all I cn to enjoy this now, be what it may.
      Thanks for the comments, Terri!

  7. It’s amazing when you meet someone who somehow has managed to cling to that childlike playfulness–they are a respite from the world’s gravity 🙂

  8. splendid imagery.

  9. Jacqui BB said

    Closed my eyes and tried to recall

    Those times so long ago

    When hope still lived within me

    I think it is merely harder to find and must be fanned to flare up again. Wonderful lines.

  10. Heaven said

    Very nice… it would be lovely if life is simple, isn’t it ~

  11. nice simile to begin.
    nice movement through the read to the message.
    and the message is great. I can identify strongly with this piece.

    very good job…and Yes, I did enjoy this.

  12. Jess P said

    Very beautiful, thougtful

  13. A deeply thought poem, Charles. I like the way these first four lines:

    Eyes closed, I smiled and imagined

    A full moon hanging low in the sky

    Looking like a shiny pearl button

    On a dandy cowboy’s shirt

    create an image of a simple life. The cowboy, out on the plain, at night gazing up at the sky while tending to his cattle. It didn’t sound sad as much as a reminiscence of what was. I love it very much.

    I wrote a sad one but it is more of a story. Perhaps, you’d like to stop by and read it. It is fiction but is in some ways about many people I know who have told me tales that I wove into this.


    • I had read your story yesterday, Isadora, and thought I had left a comment. In any case, I like it and think it is a superb bit of writing!
      Thank you for the thought-filled comments on my poem. Your comments are always a treat and a blessing to me.

  14. SiNA said

    You still can of course…through your beautiful thoughts..through your heartfelt words…your poetry 🙂 beautiful!

  15. nice to discover your work

  16. Miss Kitten said

    From now on whenever I look up at the moon I’ll see that silvery button on a dandy cowboy’s shirt. Lovely, Charles. Just lovely.

  17. Becky said

    I love reading you Sir Charles. 🙂
    This is a great example of why.

  18. Charles,
    Such a visual poem, and beautifully so. Loved the western touches well befitting a Texan, and the wistful retrospective mood. Sorry I hadn’t read you lately– I’ve not been in much of a reading space lately, but it’s good to get another look at your work.

    • No problem about reading, Elaine. I try to be faithful to read those I enjoy, but sometimes it just isn’t possible. I’m glad to see you back here agin, though. I enjoy your comments.

  19. Oh, and BTW, hope was the theme that worked best for me this time around. I tried to write on some of the other stuff, but it just wasn’t turning out very well. My poem on hope is the only one I wrote just for this week’s picnic. The other two I have linked to are kind of seasonal things I just happened to have written recently. Here’s the hope poem:

  20. amazing one.

    very well penned sentiments.

  21. Sherry Mashburn said

    achingly nostalgic . . . good capture of a mood

  22. Ina said

    Lovely and beautifully written 🙂

  23. There is so much contentment and happiness in simple, timeless joys:))

  24. Andy said

    Please forgive my lateness in visiting. My works schedule has been crazy & just this morning I was having problems with Blogger.

    I really enjoyed reading this. I know in quiet moments, I’ve often gone back & reminisced over what was, but they were just fleeting thoughts. Like you, I’m very happy with life today & always look forward to what tomorrow will bring.

    Thanks for sharing & visiting. Your comments are always appreciated.

    A Sweet, Spanish Flower

    • No problem, Andy! We all get busy, and I don’t expect everyone to be able to comment on everything.
      I appreciate your comments, and I’m glad you enjoyed this one!

  25. clariice said

    When hope is more than just a word
    This Struck a chord deep inside. It’ seemed quite long ago. Felt myself going back in time.
    Love this!

RSS feed for comments on this post · TrackBack URI

Please leave a comment! We love hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: