#children

IF WAR WAS TOLD IN A CHILDREN'S BOOK

 

The sky was filled with planes on that cold, cold wet day

We heard the bombs exploding…we were too scared to play.

 

They killed some of our neighbors and friends…that’s what bombs are meant to do

We held on to one another hoping they would not kill us too.

 

Mom said, “Grab what you can…we must leave at first light.”

“We’re heading to safety…Dad will stay here and fight.”

 

The next morning we left…as bombs bursted in air

with only the clothes our our backs…I brought Teddy Bear.

 

It was loud…it was scary…smoke filled the skies

I couldn’t see Dad wave…there were tears in my eyes.

 

We walked and we walked…my feet were so sore

Mom said, “Keep going.” Then we walked on some more.

 

When we finally stopped walking…strangers greeted us with a smile…

They said, “Welcome, friends, welcome…you’ll be safe here awhile.”

 

And though we felt safe…we were scared…we were, all of us…sad.

This wasn’t our home…we were missing our dad.

 

Then one day Mom came to us…she looked a little nervous and mad…

She said, “It’s time to go home, children…let’s go find your dad.”

 

So returning by the path we just, weeks ago, roamed…

my family, and Teddy Bear, started for home.

 

It was a frightening walk because, before we were through, 

we saw the death and destruction bombs and bullet can do.

 

When we finally got home, after walking many sunsets and dawns

we found, not only our house, but our whole village…was gone.

 

After many days searching…we realized then…

Dad was gone too…we’ll never see him again.

 

So to children of all ages…here’s the message I’m sending…

most stories about war…don’t have happy endings.

 

THE MAIN REASON FOR NO MORE WARS

 

There is one main reason to have no more wars…one reason no more soldiers…no more buildings…no more countries should ever fall…

That reason lies in the eyes and the hearts of the youngest of us all.

 

There are countless victims in a war…so many losses coast to coast….but, I imagine, in any war it is the children who lose the most.

 

All parents…every mother…every father…every woman…every man…want to see their children remain children for as along as children can.

 

It is the innocence of their childhood we’d like to take our time and walk them through…to show them all the beautiful things a little compassion and love can do.

 

Our children need us to be their teachers…to find a way to reach into their hearts and minds and souls…until it is their turn to teach.

 

It is a world of peace and love we’d like them to explore…but…how can we teach of peace and love in the middle of a war?

 

In truth…we can’t! Because even if children survive the war…if they’re one of the lucky ones…their eyes can never un-see the damage war has done.

 

For somewhere along the way they pay too high a cost…their purity is taken…their innocence is lost.

 

Because when children see that first bullet fired…that first bomb drop…with their initiation into war….no matter what we say or do…they are not children anymore.

 

ADVICE FOMR A CHILD

We try to raise our children with kind and generous traits that we hope become inherent…oftentimes forgetting how your children are also raising parents…

 

With that in mind, I shall yield my pen to the chid in me for a day…it seems he’s been waiting patiently all these years and has some things he’d like to say…

 

Ahem…thank you adult me, for giving me the opportunity to pen this little rhyme…the first thing I’d like to tell all you parents out there is to give us children…your time.

 

You need to know how important your time is…for every child’s sake…that merely producing children…does not a parent make.

 

You may shower us with gifts of money…of toys that move and speak…but at the end of every day…it is time with you we seek.

 

Your eyes are important to us…it’s where we find our self-esteem…for when we see you believing in us…then we are free to dream.

 

We are children so we love to play…not necessarily for fortune or for fame…and we don’t have to receive a trophy…every time we play a game.

 

There will be times we struggle…or fail when we compete…and when we fail we need to know you’ll be there to help us back upon our feet.

 

We need to know…good or bad…from the time our life begins…you will love us as much every time we lose…as all those times we win.

 

We need you to be patient with whatever problems life will pose…it is through your patience we will prosper and how our confidence and independence grows.

 

Never be afraid to tell us NO…it will help us in the end…remember we need you to be our parents…we don’t need another friend.

 

We look to you for guidance…we look to you for love…and sometimes, when we need it, you can give us a little shove.

 

But be careful not to shove too hard…or to both of our dismays…you may think you’re helping…but you’re pushing us away.

 

Remember to love us unconditionally…that’s what parents are supposed to do…if you can do that…no questions asked…then we’ll love you unconditionally too.

 

It’s really not too much to ask…I hope you all can see….by following this child’s advice…there’s no telling who your children will grow up to be.

 

Because when you stop and think about it…we are only children for a day…before time and life with its responsibilities snatch our childhood away….

 

Well…my time is up…but let me leave you with one final reminder regarding us smallest family members….you never know what lessons today…tomorrow…we’ll remember.

 

One final note to adult me….you say this poetry thing is hard..but now that I’ve gotten through it….how hard can it be..if even a child can do it.

 

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INNOCENCE

 

There is a a purity born into every baby…an innocence that runs deep…I imagine every parent feels it whenever they watch their baby sleep.

 

We not only see it in the way they sleep…but in the morning when they rise…we see it in the way they look at us…it’s in their smile…in their eyes.

 

I saw it in my children and grandchildren…in the different things they’d say and do…and I imagine you’ve seen it in your children…and in your grandchildren too.

 

I’m also sure you’ve seen it even if you don’t have children…if that was never meant to be…because innocence is one of the easiest and most endearing sights our eyes will ever see.

 

Yes, if you want to view a little innocence…watch a child…listen to their sounds…you’ll quickly come to realize…that is…where innocence abounds.

 

And we’re not alone…nature also sees their innocence for why do you suppose…she allows the ladybug to crawl upon their finger…and the butterfly to land upon their nose.

 

But innocence is fragile and as the years go by 

if it’s not cared for…

if it’s not nurtured…

there’s a chance that it may die.

 

So I pray…once born…once created…once that innocence arrives…

we’ll do our best with all our children…to keep that innocence alive..

 

For I can think of nothing more distressing…

more tragic…

a more sorrowful expense…

than a child who’s lost their purity…

who’s lost their trust…

who’s lost their innocence.

 

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THE THINGS THEY NEVER CARED ABOUT

 

Through the years of watching our children and grandchildren grow…they never left a doubt…as to those things that were important to them…and those things they never cared about.

 

They never cared if we were old or bald…or short or tall or fat.

They never cared about our physical flaws…(Boy, were we glad of that!)

 

They never cared if our house was small…or if the ceiling had a crack.

They never cared if the lawn was mowed…or that there was no grass in the back.

 

They never cared how much money we had…if we drove a Mercedes or Jaguar…

They never cared if there were scratches or dents…or parts missing from our car.

 

They only cared that we loved them…and that we somehow found a way

to show them that we loved them…each and every day.

 

They cared if we were honest and fair…that we were accepting, generous and kind

They cared that we nurtured their hearts, their souls…and helped to improve their minds……

 

They cared that we spent time with them…and the last time that I checked..

They cared if we treated them with tenderness…with humanity…and respect.

 

How blessed we’ve been to watch our children and grandchildren grow…

and of this we have no doubt:

They taught us more about life and how to live it…

by the things they never cared about.

 

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A CHILD'S MIND

 

Having worked in schools and now in a bookstore many children have come my way…and whenever I see a child I see innocence on display.

 

I love the way a child’s mind works….there’s no pretense…no deception…

I love their openness…their candor…love the innocence of their perception.

 

Recently I was again reminded of that innocence when a mother and daughter I had the pleasure to meet…they were in the bookstore when the mother noticed her daughter’s shoes were placed on her wrong feet.

 

When she mentioned this to her daughter…her daughter bent down and placed her hands upon her calves…“Don’t be silly Mommy,” she said, “these are the only feet I have.”

 

Her mother and I smiled at each other…knowing children see things differently…as they struggle to make sense out of the world they hear and see.

 

I wonder if a child’s mind…(of course this is just a guess)…

isn’t created to absorb love, and acceptance…and cultivate tenderness. 

 

I picture a child’s mind as vast…

and open…

and wherever it originates from…

the more love and acceptance that’s put into it…

the more open and tender it becomes.

 

As I watched her mother help her change her shoes…

and, thankfully, not her feet…

I secretly hoped this child’s mind throughout her life

would remain open

and

innocent 

and sweet.

 

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CHILDREN AND ELDERS

 

In the circle of life it is vital we peacefully co-exist…which means our children and our elders should never be dismissed.

 

Children, who are at the beginning of life, and elders, who are nearing the end are equally important and come with their own dividends.

 

Our children remind us there is wonder and hope…around every corner…around every turn…while our elders have already experienced so much of what we are waiting to learn.

 

Why should we listen to our children and our elders?

Because...not only is it important to our growth…

but there comes a point in our circle of life…

when we will have been both.

 

 

NOTE TO CHILDREN

From the time you were a baby many nights after reading you a book and planting a kiss upon your head…after making sure there were no monsters lurking neath your bed.

 

After praying to the heavens how safe your soul should be kept…your mom and I loved standing by your bed and watching…as you slept.

 

Do not be alarmed it’s not as crazy as is seems…for parents often cherish every moment they are blessed to watch their children dream.

 

You see…while you are dreaming of soaring through the sky or sailing the ocean blue…or whatever you might be dreaming of…we are dreaming too.

 

Our dream is that your life will be like a fairy tale…with a happy ending just for you.

Our dream is that the dreams you dream will…all…one day…come true.

 

We whisper to you if one dream fails…we will be there with a smile and ice cream…to soothe your heart while encouraging you…to pick another dream.

 

And another…and another if you must…because in this world dreams are teeming…and while we watch you sleep we hope you never will stop dreaming.

 

We stopped watching you sleep long ago as the older and older you grew…but we never have…and never will…stop wishing for your dreams to come true…

 

You see wishing the best for their children…wishing all their dreams come true…wishing for their happiness…is just what parents do.

 

And no matter how old you get in life…if you ever need a bridge 

from your dreams to our dreams remember…

there’s always ice cream in our fridge.

 
 
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A MASTERPIECE IN THE MAKING

 

Yesterday I was surprised, I was amazed…I was elated

to have the privilege of watching a masterpiece of art being created.

 

I sat next to the artist…and again I was in awe

as he put his pencil to his paper…and he began to draw.

 

And I began to smile…then I began to stare

for never have I seen a pencil move so fast..

with so much grace…

and so much flair.

 

He told me what he was drawing…was it a fire engine…or a bird

but the artist is just learning my language…and I didn’t understand a word.

 

His inspiration ended quickly…as inspirations sometimes do…

His masterpiece completed…

in a minute…

maybe two.

 

And again I was surprised and amazed at his generosity

for without a thought about it…he gave his masterpiece to me.

 

As he ran out of the room…this thought occurred to me…

When he does become a famous artist I can say…

I knew him when we was three.



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