Friday, 28 January 2011

Jumping to Conclusions

I came across this poem at work today. It brought a little lump to my throat, and made me think that it's wise to treat people well, even if they do badly by us, because we never really know the full story behind their actions unless we take the time to ask.

What My Dad Did

Where they have been, if they have been away
or what they've done at home, if they have not -
you make them write about a holiday.
One writes My Dad did. What? Your Dad did what?

That's not a sentence. Never mind the bell.
We stay behind until the work is done.
You count their words (you who can count and spell);
all the assignments are complete bar one

and although this boy seems bright, that one is his.
He says he's finished, doesn't want to add
anything, hands it in just as it is.
No change. My Dad did. What? What did his Dad?

You find the 'E' you gave him as you sort
through the reams of what this girl did, what that lad did
and read the line again, just one 'e' short:
'This holiday was horrible. My Dad did.'


Maybe I was more aware because the anniversary of my Dad's death is only three days away. It'll be 13 years. Sometimes it seems like only yesterday.

So today I just stopped. To think.

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