Everyone we know seems to be feeling old, time flying, their own obsolescence. Even Improvised Life’s tattood, purple-haired, 24-year-old editorial assistant Mira Keras describes her just-a-few-years-younger sisters rolling their eyes at the datedness of certain things she does.

Daily, we find ourselves doing things to antidote the agism in our head, about OURSELVES. We find Neruda’s Ode to Age helps mightily to shift our view.

Read it OUT LOUD!

I don’t believe in age.
All old people
in their eyes,
a child,
and children,
at times
observe us with the
eyes of wise ancients.
Shall we measure
in meters or kilometers
or months?
How far since you were born?
How long
must you wander
like all men
instead of walking on its surface
we rest below the earth?
To the man, to the woman
who utilized their
energies, goodness, strength,
anger, love, tenderness,
to those who truly
and in their sensuality matured,
let us not apply
the measure
of a time
that may be
something else, a mineral
mantle, a solar
bird, a flower,
something, maybe,
but not a measure.
Time, metal
or bird, long
petiolate flower,
man’s life,
shower him
with blossoms
and with
or with hidden sun.
I proclaim you
not shroud,
a pristine
with treads
of air,
a suit lovingly
through springtimes
around the world.
time, I roll you up,
I deposit you in my
bait box
and I am off to fish
with your long line
the fishes of the dawn!

—Pablo Neruda, translated from the Spanish by Margaret Sayers Peden

Nicholas Nixon
Nicholas Nixon


Photos from Nicholas Nixon’s very beautiful Forty years of the Brown Sisters. Click the link to see forty years of photographs of the sisters.

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