Monthly Archives: December 2022

Minding the Garden

      I find when I tend not
to my mind
It grows unruly
with thorn-tangled branches
      I must ceaselessly uproot
sprouts of anger
seedlings of negativity
lest the whole garden
within my skull
be choked and strangled
by the virulent weeds
of black apathy
whose perennial bloom is Death

A Question Worth Considering

How do I be a dad, when I grew up with such a poor example? My mother, God rest her soul, did all she could, loved so much sometimes I wonder if that’s what really killed her, yet a mother can’t teach a boy to be a man, much less a father. And my father? I don’t want to inflict that example on my sons; I love them too much.

So I draw from the behaviors of my male mentors who guided me through my troubled youth. I observe life as it interacts with my heart, and I learn what I can. I stay as steadfast as I can in practicing what I believe. When I fall, I get back up. I promise myself I’ll never give up, and sometimes that promise is the only hope I know.

I tell my children the truth–I’m transparent in my parenting–perhaps I tell them too much at times, forgetting they are children. But I love them above all else, and I feel my unconditional love perhaps makes up for some of my many shortcomings as a parent.

I embrace labor as a sound foundation for a flourishing life. I continually cultivate positivity and happiness within my mind, knowing how bleak life can appear when experienced through the living lens of apathy or stagnant sorrow. I fill myself with buoyant laughter to avoid being pulled under by swirling currents of black depression. I refuse to drown in that too-familiar sea.

I strive to always do the next right thing because I know I’m being ever studied by my pair of sons. Children will brook no hypocrisy, nor should they. When I teach them to question authority, I can hardly grow angry when they eventually question mine.

Mostly I just follow my gut. I follow the Tao as best I can and parent accordingly. Perhaps no example was the best example after all.