Olive Eyes


The Café Philos Poetry Prompt For Them That Be Wild Things (April 11, 2019)

Has there been a moment, time, person, event, etc. in your life that you thought and felt was so beautiful and fulfilling you would not have regretted dying after it?

Not that you would have wanted to have died, but that you would have had no regrets afterwards……… Here’s my story Paul, a tale of no regrets…………..

Olive Eyes


I’d forgotten to pump-up the car tyres

The car’s out the front

We’ve got to be going soon

The appointment note is crumpled in my hand

It’s over an hours drive to the city

My mother-in-law is waiting to see us off

She’s pensive, knowing I’m on edge

Feeling for her daughters predicament

My wife, my patient, looks at me forlornly

Her pleading olive eyes make me more panicky

Now to transfer her from our bed

Into her borrowed wheelchair

I’ve no idea, it’s my first go

Damn, the chair’s tyre’s are nearly flat too

No time now, we must leave

Another transfer into the car

I almost stumble, she’s awkward to move

She’s unsteady, her legs aren’t working

I firmly grab her around the waist

And she clasps her arms over my shoulders

A gentle embrace of respect

We wryly smile at each other

She looks at me, with her pleading olive eyes

I stay strong, but I’m anxiously shaking

Finally I’ve positioned her into the car

I somehow fold the borrowed wheelchair

Frustrated, throwing the chair into the boot

Off we drive, I’m trying not to over-speed

Nervously over-gripping the steering wheel

The whites of my knuckles plain to see

Soon we’re approaching the city centre

Agape, I’ve little idea of where to go

She looks at me with her pleading olive eyes

Bravely I say “Just a few more blocks”

Blindly lucky, I eventually find our destination


An imposing building, tall and dark grey

Ungracefully I transfer her out of the car

Wheeling her in, “damn” these flat tyres

Eight storey’s up to the Doctors rooms

He’s a renowned Neurologist, there’s none in our town

We greet him, he’s a confident, but sombre man

And my wife looks at him with her pleading olive eyes

Knowingly, I think, he’s seen those sort of eyes before

There were tests, lots of questions, and more examinations

Our time there seemed to be standing still

And silently we wait for blood results to return

Eerily the Doctor begun to speak and explain

A strange aura of hush fell upon us

As we listened to his authoritative voice

“It’s my diagnosis, that you’ve the Neurological disorder, Multiple Sclerosis”


The long hour’s drive home was stunned quiet

Except for the many rolling tears

Trickling from my wife’s pleading olive eyes

And on the road the cars tyres felt flatter

The next day, I pumped the tyres up

On her borrowed wheelchair, and on the car

That signalled the beginning of our long journey

Another thirty years of her gracious and everlasting smile

Wheeling over the lumpy roads, until the last bend

Looking at me no more, with her pleading olive eyes


Ivor Steven (c)  2018.


Published by


G'day, and welcome to my blog site. My name is Ivor Steven, I live in Geelong, Australia. I'm an ex-industrial chemist, and a retired plumber, and a former Carer of my wife(Carole), for 30 years, who suffered from severe MS. I Write poetry about those personal thoughts, throughout and beyond my life as a Carer. I've been blogging for over 2 years, and writing poems for 19 years. Of course a lot of my poems are about my favourite subject Carole, but since I've been blogging my writings have become quite varied, humourous, mystical, observational, and even a few monster/horror poems.

99 thoughts on “Olive Eyes”

  1. Be sure Ivor your words on a page will bring you comfort and be cherished for decades to come. Thanks for stopping by earlier today. I accidently hit a button I hardly knew existed and disappeared your comment. Chris.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Chris, the comment should still be in your “My Site”, click on comments, then click on spam icon at top or pending or deleted, ….. hehe, I’ve done it to myself too !!


  2. Oh, Ivor… I can’t even begin… Now I understand why it took you so long to write. You did an amazing job. It is just beautiful. I had to take off my glasses to write this because they fogged up with tears… all the love, new friend. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Amber, A day in my life, that’s been part of my vivid dreams for a long time, now that I’ve finally written it down, my dreams may be less vivid….Don’t worry, I’ve always a big supply of tissues here

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hello Ivor when i read Olive Eyes this morning I really could relate; because I once worked with a co-worker whose wife was dying from kidney failure. Whenever I worked with him, which was often, I tried to keep him laughing and talking and supported him emotionally as much as I could. When she died in her sleep he was devastated and it has taken him a long time to learn to live with his loss.

    Those who experience losing a partner or a child never get over it – the best one can do is take each day one at a time as they struggle to come to terms with their loss.

    The fear, uncertainty and the sense of powerlessness and the struggle to remain competent and strong for your wife as you faced this adversity together really come through in your words.

    Olive Eyes is well written and beautifully expressed a testament to your emotional endurance. I’m sorry that life required you and your wife to pay such an unfair price and I truly wish that i could have there as a friend to support you during your hour of greatest need!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your awesome story, comment and support, I’m quite overwhelmed with your beautiful words, and like everyone else who have read my poem today, you’ve gently placed another few sparkles over my heart. It’s nearly 6 years since Carole passed, and I’m reasonably healed, and her memories are my treasures. “Olive Eyes” has been a story I’ve wanted to tell for a long time now, which basically took place 36 years ago. I’m hoping that there’s people that have been in a similar situation, who might read my story and gain some strength from my words, letting them know they are not alone in their battle, and they can reach out for help……. Thanks again Dabir

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My computer is misbehaving today and I have been losing comments I have written. I see why this was so hard to write Ivor. When we love someone so much we carry their burden twice as heavy and the responsibility of that is too much for one soul to bear. but memories come in all forms and the bad ones give way to happy ones eventually, thank you for sharing a part of Carole’s life and legacy she left in the tender hearted man you have become.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can so relate to that first trip, Ivor. Went down the same way for me except I collapsed in the yard on the way to the car and we had to call the paramedics. It was so distressing. I admire you very much for your wonderful care of her for all those years. Your poem reminds me a lot of some of the work poet John Updike did while he was in and out of the hospital dying of cancer. It’s very somber and real, too. This is my favorite poem by him… https://promptlings.wordpress.com/2015/02/21/dogs-death-by-john-updike-2/

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s when I jot the main items down from my dreams, and the little notes act as prompts to later help me recall more of the details of my dreams. It’s a process I’ve been doing for nearly 20 years now, and sometimes it works 😊


  6. This dedication to your beautiful wife and her olive eyes is so heartfelt thing. It was heartbreaking to me but I also felt the love you two shared which was sweeter than ever. I pray to God to keep her soul always in peace and to keep you healthy, happy and this much creative always.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Tapasi for your lovely comments, I’m pleased you felt all the emotions of that fateful day. Your kind wishes are very much appreciated 😊❤️❤️


      1. This is such a powerful poem, so real and raw. It’s no wonder it caused an impact. I think it’s my favorite of yours so far. It’s really hard to choose though. *smile* ♥.


  7. a powerfully loving tribute to the light of your life … extremely well written Ivor, those damned tires are a great metaphor for how deflated you must have felt … and I’m sure she lived thirty more years just to be with you and coz you took such good care of her ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Weeping here.
    Such a powerful, important, loving tribute to Carole!
    I believe with all of my heart that her olive eyes are still looking at you (and watching over you). Her olive eyes are filled with love, and they are twinkling and smiling.
    Ivor, thank you for being that loving, caring, kind, ETC., husband to Carole! There are not many men like you in the world! I am honored to know you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Weeping here.
      The tears are smudging my phone screen, my heart is filled with the kindness of your words, my every present olive will certainly be watching over me ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  9. That is so utterly heartbreaking, Ivor, and so beautifully expressed. When you know someone so well & you’ve been together long enough to understand each other with just a look, or small gesture, is extremely touching, & that’s exactly how you’ve portrayed it…pure love.

    Liked by 1 person

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