When I Am Old I Shall Wear Purple

Day 236


I intend to live fully, here and now.

I do not wait for someday or oneday; today is my living reality.


“When I am an old woman I shall wear purple, with a red hat that doesn’t go, and doesn’t suit me”… “I shall sit down on the pavement when I am tired and gobble up samples in shops”… “and run my stick along the public railings and make up for the sobriety of my youth.”  (by Jenny Joseph)

I’ve long enjoyed Ms. Joseph’s poem, but would love to ask her, “Why wait until you’re an old woman?  Why not wear purple now?”  Perhaps it is in a very human attempt to feel immortal that we save so much living for tomorrow.  After all, if living is saved for a later date, then the future must be certain… Or so we would like to believe.

We save words for better moments, clothes, linens, and dishware for special occasions, and the reaching for of goals for a later point in life when we have more time (is there a 25 hour day coming sometime in the near future that no one told me about?).  We save our dreams for ideal settings and our hearts for ideal partners.  Why?  What if tomorrow never comes? What if life never matches up to our ideal?

An email went around several years ago, telling of the man who’d bought his wife a very beautiful nightgown, which he secreted away in a closet to give her some day when the time was right.  As the story goes, his wife was suddenly killed and he found the nightie he’d never given her, the sight of which filled him with regret.  So how many joys, dreams, words, chances, clothes or pieces of crystal are you saving?

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