Thin and transparent
Is the love of old age.
You are moving hesitantly
On your body as on earth.
With calculation, you are saving your strength,
You sense the sting of each destined day.
You regret having overlooked
So many sunsets.
Flowers, trees, grass
Engrave in you their thorny songs.
You are walking on life as on glass.
Shadows take on a deep meaning,
A cool smile you accept like a gift,
You're stingy with God's plenty of time.
Originally published in Benjamin Harshav, Barbara Harshav, American Yiddish Poetry: A Bilingual Anthology. (c) 1986 The Regents of the University of California.