Myrln Monday (2)

Myrln is gone, but his spirit remains with us in the power of his words:
Fathers and Daughters
Little girls are nice,
but we do them wrong
fussing with their hair and dressing them up
like dolls –
teaching them from the start
they are decorative playthings.
Better we should feed them
words and numbers and tools
to remind them
that before women, they are people.
Teach them love and caring and nurture, yes,
but not as the entirety of their being,
else those qualities
become walls and prisons.
Give them, as well, wings
and teach them to fly –
in case later in life
someone builds walls around them.
Little girls are nice,
but daughters who are their soaring selves
are better.
Fathers and Sons
All the time they’re growing up,
sons try hard to please their fathers.
They play ball, follow dad’s interest in cars,
or in building things,
or in fishing –
whatever it is that pleases dad.
Mostly learning how to be a man.

If they’re lucky,
they’re not required to embrace any of those
for a lifetime.
If they’re lucky,
somewhere along the way,
they’re let loose
to strike out after their own interests
and to please themselves.

And fathers,
if they’re smart,
realize that somewhere along the way
is a turning point:
a time when sons become teachers,
and fathers can learn
what their sons became on their own,
how manhood is not a fixed concept.
And say to their sons,
“Good job.”

Then both will know
they did right
in pleasing each other.

William A. Frankonis, 1937 – 2008

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