Unplanned Obsolescence

by Carol Aronoff

A newspaper headline has rendered me 
obsolete. Do not resuscitate over 60. 
I have been declared expendable, asked
to sacrifice my life for the sacred stock 
market–for my as yet unborn grandchildren 
I may never get to meet.

Of course, a number of those asking 
are rich and over seventy who have 
forgotten their age in a senior moment 
or believe they are indispensable–like 
George Orwell’s Animal Farm where
some are more equal than others.

I never thought of myself as disposable 
before, never thought I could be discarded 
like yesterday’s old news. In that world
where value lies in dollar signs and decimals,
where enough is never enough, how can
I protest my relevance?

Sit with me at the right distance, wingspan
of a turkey vulture, and share this fragile,
precious moment. Life can also be measured 
in the ways we love each other, in the beauty
we find anywhere, and in the length of time 
it takes to read a poem.

Carol Alena Aronoff, Ph.D. is a psychologist, teacher and poet. Her work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and has won several prizes. She was twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Carol has published two chapbooks (Cornsilk and Tapestry of Secrets) and six full-length poetry collections: The Nature of Music, CornsilkHer Soup Made the Moon Weep, Blessings From an Unseen World, Dreaming Earth’s Body (with artist Betsie Miller-Kusz) as well as The Gift of Not Finding: Poems for Meditation (forthcoming). Dana Carlson is a painter, illustrator, and web developer (by day) living in the lovely, leafy borough of Queens in New York City. This piece is called “Almost Batik Landscape 2.”

2 thoughts on “Unplanned Obsolescence

  1. I enjoyed the poem above by Carol Aronoff. I think that there is a lot of age discrimination in our society. COVID-19 is just making this discrimination more clear. Also, police attacked a seventy-year-old demonstrator at a Black Lives Matter protest. No human being is dispensable. Best wishes!

    Janet Ruth Heller
    website is https://www.janetruthheller.com/


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