My calendar tells me I am seventy-five.
But that is not who I am.
I am certain that my situation is typical:
Our children and strangers
Forget who we are.
I am the same person today
As I have been through the years.
My body suffers the losses and ills of age,
But, I am so grateful to be able to say,
My mind is as sharp as the proverbial tack.
And my knowledge and wisdom have increased.
Don't tell me what I should do,
Or what I can't do.
Don't tell me to take the train,
When my doctors and the government
Find me fit to drive my car,
And I have an outstanding driving record.
Don't tell me to sleep or to eat -
On your schedule.
When I tell you what I want to do,
And what I can do.
Judge me by what I say and what I do -
By my performance -
Not by the labels pasted to my forehead
What I wish for is
Respect for who I am.
And above all,
Do not call me "dear".
If I am not your lover.
Beware of my wrath if you disrespect me.
I do not forget, and I do not forgive easily.