August 15, 2013


Young woman
Young man

From the day you were born
You saw things
That we didn’t see
You knew things
That we didn’t know

We taught you
Everything we knew
What our parents knew
What our grandparents knew
We taught you
What we learned

But still we face problems
We can not solve

Now you are at a crossroads
What will you do?

Accept what we say
Keep us, your elders, happy
Proud that you follow our lead

Or will you stand your ground
Will you teach us
What you came to teach us

Teach us
What we need to know

I wonder
When we were your age
Maybe we knew the truth you now know
But we were too weak
We let it go

Be brave
Be strong enough to disappoint us for awhile

Be more stubborn than we are
Be wise

You know
What we need to know

Will you teach us
Or will you let it go?

About the poem:

It is within families that evolution takes place or doesn’t. Thus, family beliefs and problems are handed down one generation to the next. If parents and grandparents would willingly admit that we don’t know what is best, we could allow the wisdom of someone with fresh eyes. We could open our minds to work together to solve the problems we have been unable to solve when we followed the advice we give so freely!

This poem is another take on the theme also explored in the “Start From Scratch” poem in my book “With Open Arms”.

In my experience, wisdom is not based on age alone. Wisdom can enrich our lives greatly, if we are open to receiving it. For example, I have been blown away by a baby’s ability to live in the present, and kids’ insights about the meaning of life, and young people’s passion for the environment and love. Wisdom flows in all directions.

The photo was taken at the Ross Cherry Creek Library today, one of my favorite hangout spots in Denver.


About the Author joangregerson

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