Alison Cassidy

Rookie (6th August,1945 / Melbourne, Australia)

The Trolley Song - Poem by Alison Cassidy

I saw them at the supermarket
moving slowly together

She was small and softly grey
in her wheelchair
(more like a pram really)
arm in a sling
eyes dull
and faintly hostile

He was neatly dressed
and stooped
carefully maneuvering the trolley
and the wheelchair
inspecting the shelves
for the items
neatly printed
in large letters
on the list

He consulted his companion
about every choice -
smiling and nodding
for her approval.

He received none.

I felt a surge of compassion
for this gentle man
and his once-upon-a-time bride.


Comments about The Trolley Song by Alison Cassidy

  • (6/9/2009 5:21:00 AM)

    Though I know the overwhelming feeling / overall effect lies in the last four lines, as ever with your writing, Allie, you always seem to pick out something else, sharply observed, which often is at odds with the general picture (let's face it - we are all contradictions - so there are inevitably things there for seasoned observers!) ... and for me in this there was the beginning of the typical 'cute little old lady picture' until the 'dull and faintly hostile' line which then catches up with the reader again at: 'He received none', at which point the nature of her situation (and his) is 100% clear to the reader without further description..

    You have a knack of balancing poems neatly on a disconcerting phrase... makes it intriguing for the reader. I tried something a little similar in 'Brief Blindspot', though I am not sure it worked nearly so well. I'll stop rambling now! Tony
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  • (1/29/2007 12:51:00 PM)

    A mini drama filled with insight and compassion. (Report)Reply

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  • (1/10/2007 9:31:00 AM)

    Time, life and fortune bring all the good stuff to a close eventually, and yet love can survive so much and in tragedy produce such a terrific shining example. Another brilliant Alison Cassidy snapshot of some of the best that humankind is capable of in the worst imaginable situation. This is invaluable work and an import record of events. Allie. x jim (Report)Reply

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  • (11/3/2006 2:41:00 AM)

    In your gallery of compassion, you have placed many word portraits of unforgettable people.This one is uniquely memorable.

    Love,

    Sandra
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  • (10/14/2006 7:22:00 PM)

    Beautifully expressed pathos by one who genuinely cares... (Report)Reply

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  • Patrick Ladbrooke (10/10/2006 2:12:00 AM)

    Excellent pathos. And do you know, there is exactly that couple I see every thursday night and how sad it is. Sensitive observation.

    Patrick XX
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  • (10/9/2006 11:04:00 AM)

    A man like this lives his wedding vows to the end, bitter or no. Someone like this doesn't know bitterness, his heart is so beautiful. Thank you for recognizing that full commitment does exist as does self-sacrifice without loss of cheer. Love, Esther : ] (Report)Reply

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  • (10/7/2006 7:59:00 PM)

    I have to approve of everything people have said so far Alison. This poem builds from the point of 'faintly hostile' until the very end. Clever to have described her first and then went into detail about her caring husband. Pulling 'He recieved none' away from the other stanzas works very efficiently, as the tone shifts from positive to abruptly negative. Excellent. What really struck me was the 'once-upon-a-time bride, ' and I think most people would agree that's the image that really strikes the reader. It strikes the reader because it gives you some insight into the husband's mind as well-that he is still accepting of his wife 'in sickness and in health' throughout all their years together, even when it comes time when she doesn't respond with appreciation. Well done Ali, this poem speaks volumes.

    ~Fil
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  • (10/5/2006 10:07:00 AM)

    This is a real wake-up call to us all simply to 'notice' such things. Your careful study of his love-driven efforts and her non-response is enchanting. A superb, mature, finely crafted piece, and one with an important message. Agreed with Frank that this rates among the best of your many considerably talent-imbued pieces. t x (Report)Reply

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  • (10/1/2006 7:12:00 AM)

    24 / 7 carer, how are they to be priced-Priceless, without a tag and if they should wear one then it should read, here I am that I may help, That is something that we should all promote and think extremely high of, these people are so amazing
    Love duncan X
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  • Frank James Ryan Jr...fjr (9/27/2006 3:51:00 PM)

    ALLIE>>>A fine capture, young lady.'The Trolley Song', not only brings the Reader
    TO the Work, but as well, takes them WITHIN the Work, through darting imagework and expressive text.This piece, in fact, may indeed be cosidered one of your bestthus far....Outstanding Work here, Poetess A.!
    ''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''FJR
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  • Tailor Bell (9/27/2006 6:22:00 AM)

    overflows with compassion and perfect hints of frustration. excellent. -Tailor (Report)Reply

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  • (9/27/2006 4:51:00 AM)

    Alison this is one of your best and this sad song you murmur in a rare pitch.Only a compassionate heart can sing such a way! I want to recite this trolley song some day in future when I am alone in my journey? (Report)Reply

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  • (9/27/2006 4:24:00 AM)

    What a beautiful poem Allie! I can just see these two going about their daily routine and you the observer capturing the moment just perfectly! You get a 10 from me today..... I love it! Helen xx (Report)Reply

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  • (9/27/2006 1:59:00 AM)

    This poem really absorbed me.

    You have written it in such a way that the reader becomes the viewer, the writer, crossing the border of reader/writer.. lovely poem. Thankyou.
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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Poem Edited: Friday, September 24, 2010


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