When I'm Sixty-Four




The candy was sugarless because of his diet. The flowers weren’t addressed to him, and his secretary laughed when she read the card. She bussed him on the cheek and told him to pass it on. The heart-shaped locket on a stretchy string was in a plastic egg from a vending machine. It glowed in the dark.

He wore it home.

The candles were on the dining table, burning dimly in the darkened room. The table was set with the fine china and crystal. The wine was breathing in the bucket on the sidebar. The cloth napkins were folded like swans.

Music played somewhere in the manor, and he followed the sound to the conservatory. The lights were off. The stars shined down through the glass ceiling. The notes of a quiet, romantic song drifted in the air.

“Hi.”

The welcoming smile was fond. A hand was offered and accepted. His knee creaked in protest as he sat. The padding on the bench was thin and he made note to have it replaced.

The fingers that laced with his held untold strength and unwavering gentleness, just like the man beside him. The years had streaked black hair gray, but the face was still young. The eyes that had seen the horrors of world only looked upon him with happiness.

“I see you received my gift.”

“I did.” He lifted his free hand and tugged at the cheap necklace. He smiled in apology. “I’m sorry I have nothing for you.”

“Yes, you do.”

The kiss was soft, warm, and sweet. It was no different than the thousands of kisses received before, but that was okay. He was sixty-four and he was loved.

“Happy Valentine’s Day.”



End



When I get older losing my hair,
Many years from now.
Will you still be sending me a valentine
Birthday greetings bottle of wine.
If I'd been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door,
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

You'll be older too,
And it you say the word,
I could stay with you.
I could be handy, mending a fuse
When your lights have gone.
You can knit a sweater by the fireside
Sunday mornings go for a ride,
Doing the garden, digging the weeds,
Who could ask for more.
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

Every summer we can rent a cottage,
In the Isle of Wight, if it's not too dear
We shall scrimp and save
Grandchildren on your knee
Vera Chuck & Dave
Send me a postcard, drop me a line,
Stating point of view
Indicate precisely what you mean to say
Yours sincerely, wasting away
Give me your answer, fill in a form
Mine for evermore
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

-The Beatles, When I’m Sixty-Four


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