Those Times Ago

This is a melancholy sort of poem, but 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

While in the distance cattle lowed

And 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 on the porch

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

Sharing  on dVerse Poets Pub’s Open Link Night #


  1. Mary said

    Love the last stanza. It seems life never gets simpler, only more and more complex; but we can still yearn….and remember.

    • I think it’s one of those you-don’t-know-what-you-got-til-it’s-gone things.

  2. claudia said

    i hear you in this…somehow the world and life seems to get more and more complex and complicated..not easy to find our way in it..

    • It seems to be spinning out of control, and I fear it’s spinning in the wrong direction.

  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

    I don’t know that the world has changed so much as we have, and our perspectives of it. Great poem.

  4. kelly said

    I feel this way, too, sometimes. I think we have yet to catch up with technology, but we will. And I always, always, believe in hope.

  5. Charles, I don’t think this was too melancholy at all. But perhaps that is because I have been wishing lately that we could go back to a simpler time. Peace, Linda

  6. dang…aint that the truth man….i miss front porch living and casual conversation while hte kids play….we had it growing up but….nice touches though like hte button ona cowboy shirt…cool write man…i feel you…

    • There is much realism in this, in the respect that I remember those evenings and nights. Us kids running around playing; the adults playing cards or dominoes. And the real special times were when they’d play guitars and sing on the front porch. I can remember standing in the yard, watching and listening. Wonderful times!

  7. leahJlynn said

    I agree, At times I wish for simpler times as well. Thanks for allow us into your memories

  8. ayala said

    Nostalgic and beautiful..I wonder if the world was better then….

    • It’s really hard to say what’s better. There are many good things in both worlds.

  9. Mama Zen said

    You had me with pearl button on a cowboy shirt!

  10. Laurie Kolp said

    If only we could see through children’s eyes and laugh with them, huh?

  11. What a good poem Charles. I wrote one with the same theme for today, but it was awful. I ditched it for another at the last minute. Yours is so right, and I’m wondering why we’re all feeling like kindness is gone, hope has fled, and trust in one another has died.

  12. kaykuala said

    Complications and provocations seemed to make the world go round.Was it a wonderful world before! Nicely Charles!


  13. Tony said

    Some lovely lines here which capture something we all feel we want, but I’m not sure that we’d like it too much if we got it.

    The world has changed – but sometimes we forget that the simpler world our parents, grandparents, great grandparents etc lived in was, in many ways, much harder than ours. Their lives were more physically demanding for one thing – and simple tasks that we can achieve in minutes used to take hours of back-breaking labour.

    • Yesterday, I heard that 46% percent of the people in this country are obese. Maybe the physical demands and those hours of back-breaking labor weren’t such bad things?

  14. Such beautiful words, Charles, ‘Those times so long ago

    When hope still lived within me’ ~ lovely

  15. I too suffer from nostalgia and even, being trapped in the past probably because my immediate reality, when I look at it directly, sucks. But… that idea of “beautiful sadness” is germane here. To me this weaves a host of cliches together when you are clearly capable of much, much more, perhaps because of the impetus of looking back at too much. I wonder what it would look like if you worked with but one of these reveries? xxxj

    • Well, my advice as to your immediate reality is don’t spend a lot of time looking directly at it!
      As for me doing something with one of the host of cliches in this poem, I don’t tend to do such things. I’m retty simplistic when it comes to my poetry; I just write what comes out of my silly old head, and there ya go. But I do appreciate the comment and suggestion!
      Thank you, Jenne!

  16. Reblogged this on Marbles In My Pocket ~ The Official Blog of Charles L. Mashburn ~ Poems, Short Stories, and random thoughts from the author of "Be Still… and know that I am God" and commented:

    On the lighter side, I was thinking about an upcoming multi-class reunion, and thought; We gotta stop doing this. I can’t remember the name of a person I just met, and somebody–a bunch of somebodies–comes up to me at one of these reunions and says, “Bet you don’t know who I am.” It gets worse every year! Yep, I long for the good old days, when everybody knew my name… and I knew theirs.

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