Love and Words


Dear Child


Dear child, 

I know the last thing 

    you want

    is for me to interrupt 

    your reverie. 

Clear eyes staring 

at a world still strange 

and full of wonder. 

Even the beggars on the street

    seem part of some 

    great adventure.

Forgive me, 

    it is not my intention 

    to disturb your discovery, 

but there are things 

    I wish to say 

because in my great age,

I realize, 

    I wish

    they had been said to me. 

I wish one of those large, 

    silly things 

    children drag around,

I think they're called,

     millstones - no, adults,

     I was wrong, 

had thought enough of me 

    to teach,

    rather than let me 

    learn along the way.

And I don't mean 

    the teaching of "no," 

I don't mean 

    the teaching of fear, 

that, while well done, 

is something 

even a child 

can learn on its own. 

And I don't mean teach 

I am not trying to say 

that anyone can prepare us 

for the worst that will come 

our way, 

for death loss and 

the grief of broken hearts,

dreams undone and 

hope lost - 

these are things we can learn

on our own. 

But I wish someone had taken

    time to tell me 

what to do when there is 

    nothing bad going on. 

All I have learned 

    over my long years 

is to wait for something 

   to come, the shoe to drop 

the axe to fall 

and then I would be back 

in a world I understand. 

Dear child, 

I don't know what to do, 

when all is calm. 

And look at you, 

in your silence 

rocking to the clicking 

as we speed along 

tracks laid down with an idea

we were going somewhere 

that now just bring us 'round. 

How many of your 

    large silly things

on their Saturdays 

    decide to see 

what world lies beyond

    their stop on the way? 

My young friend here 

would gladly ride 

as far as the tram can go. 

Then just to make sure, 

he would come back 

and do it all over again. 

Just to make sure 

that yes, 

there still was 

more of the world to explore,

to find and to understand.

Dear child 

if there was one thing

I would teach you 

it is that the body heals, 

the mind grows 

and the heart 

is an indestructible thing. 

Don't let any one 

tell you anything false 

about those simple beliefs. 

The way you look at the world,

as mystery and puzzle 

and home - 

don't ever lose that.

For although there are things 

to rightly fear, 

there are more days then not

when the sun is shining and 

the sky is clear 

and all the large silly things 

around you,

of which you will be one, 

could rather enjoy themselves 

if they could just remember

    it could be done.


decagon          poetry 



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