Saturday, August 18, 2012

I Ran Across Two Poems That Compliment Each Other Perfectly . . .

You may or may not already be aware of the letter written by a father to his gay son, cutting him completely out of his life because of his orientation. It went viral a bit ago.

As a parent, I find the ability to do this mystifying, and sad. Are those children being rejected and reviled not the same children once held close as precious gifts?

These two poems, found at PFLAG Poetry for Newsletters #1, reflect my feelings on the subject.

San Diego Pride Parade - July 18, 1992
author unknown

There were hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of them
and only a handful of us.
The screamed and they shrieked and they cheered as we passed
yelling, "Thank you. It's great that you care!"
Loudest of all and clearest of all
were the screams that emerged from the eyes
of the hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of them
who watched as we marched down the street.
I carried a sign that stated most clear
my love for my son who is gay.
She stared at my sign
piercing my heart
with her pain.
I left the parade and moved to her side.
I held her in both of my arms.
Her sobs were intense and I tightened my grip
as she whispered her secret to me.
"My mom has disowned me since she found out.
She says I'm not right in the head.
She says that I'm weird
that I'm one to be feared
that I've caused her to suffer such pain.
Do you think that you could
Do you think that you might
Just be my mom for today?"
There were hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of them
looking for parents they'd lost.
There were hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of them.
But only a handful of us.
On Children
from The Prophet, the writings of Kahlil Gibran

And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said,
Speak to us of Children.

And he said:

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you.
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them but seek not to make them like you...
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The Archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with his might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the Archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as he loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

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