A Life Wasted

In the twilight of my years I walk alone,
My body, it aches, though my mind is still spry. 
For decades four I’d drowned my woes with wine, 
But now, head clear, I see with sober eye. 

I miss the loves that had passed aside, 
The wife and babe I’d lost to drink and rage.
For all those years, sweet family was denied - 
A hopeless fool locked in addiction’s cage. 

Now lively lasses laugh and flirt by near, 
Reminding me of charms forever gone. 
Though I feel young, to them I do appear 
A doddering fool, so old and bent and wan. 

With clarity I see the waste laid bare - 
A life besot by wine and full of sin. 
No chance to redo what wasn’t done with care - 
My life a tragedy, all that could have been. 

So to the youths, a warning I do bring - 
Turn not to wine, nor waste thy life entire! 
Make not my error, else thy heart shall sting - 
Let virtue guide thee, lest thou reap my pyre.

--William C., Adult