At ground level

A column about LIFE

To my grown-up son

My cousin Sandy kept this poem by Alice E. Chase in her wallet while her only son was growing up, to remind her to spend more time with him. He is now a young man and lives far from her, so she doesn’t often get to see him. Like Sandy, I miss my son and I also wish I could go back and do all the things he asked me to do …

To My Grown-Up Son

by Alice E. Chase

My hands were busy through the day,
I didn’t have much time to play
The little games you asked me to,
I didn’t have much time for you.

I’d wash your clothes; I’d sew and cook,
But when you’d bring your picture book
And ask me, please, to share your fun,
I’d say, “A little later, son.”

I’d tuck you in all safe at night,
And hear your prayers, turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door,
I wish I’d stayed a minute more.

For life is short, and years rush past,
A little boy grows up so fast,
No longer is he at your side,
His precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away,
There are no children’s games to play,
No goodnight kiss, no prayers to hear,
That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands once busy, now lie still,
The days are long and hard to fill,
I wish I might go back and do,
The little things you asked me to.

I have one more child at home, but it’s not going to be long when she, too, will be off on her own. And soon, my busy hands will lie still, and the days will be long and hard to fill …

My oldest daughter is expecting … When that joyous moment arrives, I will pass this poem on to her, so she will cherish those simple joys that I sometimes forgot to do.

August 23, 2011 - Posted by | Children, Family, Life, Parenting

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