Thursday, March 08, 2007

Of Children


"And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that
His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the Archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable."

From The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran.
(This passage never fails to bring tears to my eyes, and to remind me of the sacred responsibility that is parenthood.)

2 comments:

Baal Habos said...

Nice Poem. (Cute kid).

Anonymous said...

Ah, words of wisdom from a Maronite Lebonese Christian, truth from who speaks it. My uncle, also a Lebonese Maronite (and rural deputy sheriff), taught me the mysteries of pulling lake weeds from a outboard motor, the mechanics of firearms and other important boystuff, as I was lacking in father figures.