|"Nuevas aficiones" by Andrés Nieto Porras(Palma de Mallorca, España)|
Ask me about father and I will describe nearness
before dearness, nurture before ownership, maleness
more than femaleness and kindness more than punishment.
Babbling pa-pa, ba-ba, chi-chi comes from the mouth’s
shape and the delight of a nearby perhaps adult—
not linguistic nor biological relations.
Everything else is questionable, though culture
affects the luck of the draw more than we imagine:
Role expectations can oppress or free all genders.
List the roles that must be carried out to raise children
and discover that—though all are necessary—it
matters not at all which gender takes which of the chores.
But names still matter: Publicly the titles “Mom”
and “Dad” raise questions when they don't correspond to type.
Sperm aside, it's appearances that torment bullies—
Bullies that seek to punish in others the love that
they lack in their own role-bound and disappointed lives:nearness, dearness, nurture, and male-slash-female kindness.
Posted at Imaginary Garden with Real Toads'
I've been thinking about fathers a lot because in the USA, Father's Day nears and because my Poets United prompt for next midweek uses Father as a motif. My own Dad turns 90 on June 22 right after Father's Day, and so we honor him twice. He's one of the better dads, both unselfish and kind, though he maintains the role distinctions of his generation. Mom and he are easy with that, having been married for nearly 70 years. It is easy to love and to understand him, and he returns that love. (Truthfully, this may not be a poem but an essay for my other blog.)
Copyright © 2015 S.L.Chast