Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Parents, Guardians, Significant Adults in the Lives of Children

Children give carnations to parents on Parents' Day in South Korea

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, 

my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. 
You will always find people who are helping.” 
― Fred Rogers

“Children need to be raised in loving environments. Whenever domination is present love is lacking. Loving parents, be they single or coupled, gay or straight, headed by females or males, are more likely to raise 
healthy, happy children with sound self-esteem. ” 
― bell hooksFeminism is for Everybody

“I'm inspired by the love people have for their children. And I'm inspired by my own children, how full they make my heart. They make me want to work to make the world a little bit better. And they make me want to be a better man.” 
― Barack Obama

Wikipedia Children's Day.png
The International Day for Protection of Children, Children's Day,
is celebrated in many countries on June 1st, though the date varies.

Midweek Motif ~ Parenthood

Parents, Guardians, Significant Adults 

According to Wikipedia:  
Parents' Day is a holiday combining the concepts of a Fathers' Day and Mothers' Day.  The United Nations proclaimed June 1 to be the Global Day of Parents "to appreciate all parents in all parts of the world for their selfless commitment to children and their lifelong sacrifice towards nurturing this relationship.".[1] It is the same day as International Children's Day.
When I taught high school English, it was easy to tell which students suffered from a lack of nurturing adult presence in their lives.  At times these children needed my attention more than they needed an English lesson. I wondered if spending an hour a day with children in classes of more than 30 students was anything like parenting.  Could parents see 170 children a day, even if only for an hour?  My own parents struggled financially early on and were too angry and scared to be consistently loving until I was a pre-teen.  I feel love and gratitude for them now. 

Your Challenge:  Write a new poem, in which you take on the voice of a child with real or ideal adults parenting them.  

I Go Back to May 1937

Related Poem Content Details

I see them standing at the formal gates of their colleges, 
I see my father strolling out 
under the ochre sandstone arch, the   
red tiles glinting like bent 
plates of blood behind his head, I 
see my mother with a few light books at her hip 
standing at the pillar made of tiny bricks, 
the wrought-iron gate still open behind her, its 
sword-tips aglow in the May air, 
they are about to graduate, they are about to get married,   
they are kids, they are dumb, all they know is they are   
innocent, they would never hurt anybody.   
. . . . 
Read the rest HERE.

Lullaby in Fracktown

Related Poem Content Details

Child, when you’re sad put on your blue shoes.
You know that Mama loves you lollipops
and Daddy still has a job to lose.

So put on a party hat. We’ll play the kazoos
loud and louder from the mountaintop.
Child, when you’re sad put on your blue shoes

and dance the polka with pink kangaroos,
dolphin choirs singing “flip-flop, flip-flop.”
Hey, Daddy still has a job to lose — 
. . . . 
Read the Rest HERE.


As I drive my parents home through the snow
their frailty hesitates on the edge of a mountainside.

I call over the cliff
only snow answers.

They talk quietly
of hauling water of eating an orange
of a grandchild's photograph left behind last night.

When they open the door of their house they disappear.

And the oak when it falls in the forest who hears it 
through miles and miles of silence?
They sit so close to each other; ­
as if pressed together by the snow.

Please share your new poem using Mr. Linky below and 
visit others in the spirit of the community.
 (Next week Sumana's Midweek Motif will be - Commitment)


  1. Thank you for another challenging motif - significant others are so important when parents are lacking - at any age!

  2. Greetings all.. this was a great challenge!! I got the link wrong first time, apologies. Looking forward to some great reading!

    1. Fixed. It is great reading. I suspect we could write books of poems from this point of view.

  3. Ah the cooling rains, Happy Wednesday to all

    much love...

    1. I'm glad you're cooling off--and very happy to se you here.

  4. Thanks for this beautiful and challenging prompt Susan for making me that child again.

    1. You are very welcome. Thank you for being here always.

  5. Hey everyone,

    Hope you are having an amazing day so far :D sharing my poem "Wishes Unborn." Thank you Susan for an inspiring prompt :D

    Lots of love,

  6. Thanks for this beautiful prompt Susan that allowed me to write a poem on my father. Looking forward to read all the lovely poems here :)

  7. A tribute to my grandmother--- A grandparent who had a permanent presence in my life.It would be difficult for me to list the many ways she has graced my life with her beauty, her wit, and her wisdom. Thanks for the prompt, Susan.

    1. Tank you for bringing her to us, Panchali.

  8. I am back here after ages. Love the prompt,Susan. Looking forward to read all the beautiful poems penned down here. :)

  9. I love the Sharon Olds poem! Great prompt, Susan.....I shall return, having computer woes.

    1. Yes, right?! I shall look forward to your return at the end of woe.

  10. Ah, I wrote a poem in the style of Annell...just for the enjoyment of it. Smiles.

    1. haha! I did, too, though I used periods instead of spaces in trying to build in pauses to show aging. It was fun to try to manipulate sound and meaning that way.

    2. Yes, Susan, I really LOVED the style of your poem this time. It is fun to experiment a bit.

    3. So that is what you two were doing, was it!

    4. Funny, Robin! Mine are each 3 syllables because I was also trying to break iambic pentameter's hold on me.

  11. I am exhausted, a long day getting computer fixed.....brain is fried. Might have to come in in the morning...........

  12. My poem is about resisting motherly advice – which, however mistaken, was still a sign of her loving care.

    1. Maybe her tone will change when she feels more welcome--if the remnant within you is still also part of her.


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