Yes, I'm giving you homework.

So it's almost 1 am and I'm reading this little book and laughing and crying. Yes, it's messy and not overly attractive but it's good for the soul, once in a while, to get a little carried away. Wisdom, sweetness, and humor--all in one small book. Can't beat that with a stick.

One of the funniest bits of advice to a Dad regarding his daughter as she enters the boys-might-be-okay phase:

"Odd-looking boys will start showing up at your house.
This is to be expected because adolescent boys are odd-looking."

So I'm stealing a page from's your homework:

Write her a short poem that includes her name and
how much you love her and her mother, and how much God loves her. Recite it to
her every night in prayer.

When I was very young (less than 10...probably 7 or 8), I got into a spat with my Dad over something. I haven't a clue what--I just remember it was Big. Trouble. That was not something that happened very often, at least in my memory. (Mom may remember it differently.) Anyway, I remember after we "made up" my Dad brought me a little poem that he had written for me and he read it to me. He said he'd written a few days before, after he'd stood at the window and watched me walking home from where the school bus dropped me off at the end of our road. He'd had my mom type it up the old Olympic typewriter and he signed it in a scrawling penmanship that I can recognize to this day as his and only his. It was in a little frame.

On seeing Sarah come home from School:

I look across the waving field and there I see her

She crosses green with books in hand, her little
heart today has learned

But now she's free and time is rent, she wanders
through her own bright world

And as I see her cross the yard, it's sweet to know
she's Daddy's girl.

My dad has been a writer and a poet for as long as I can remember, and though I've read and loved many of his works, nothing will ever come close to being as special as these 4 lines are to me. It's the only poem I've ever memorized that stuck. It's the only piece of paper I've kept for more than 25 years. It's reassuring. It's a piece of my father that stays with me, no matter where I am or how old I am.

It needs no picture and no fancy paper and no embellishing. It's picture is written on my heart.

So, no matter if you have a son or a daughter or if you are a mom or a dad, or a grandmother or grandfather, try your hand at this assignment. It doesn't have to be perfectly rythmic and it certainly doesn't have to be an epic...just a few lines to express your heart to a child you love. You never know where that thought may take your child someday.

Now go do your homework.



Sarah said...

PS I'm still working on Wild at Heart. I had no idea it was so controversial. Anyway, more about that later because it is definately worth discussing.

Lynette said...

Wow. Sarah, this is so powerful. I think the poem your Dad wrote about might be the sweetest thing I've ever seen a father do. Thank you so much for sharing it with us all.

j said...

Sarah, I'm a friend of Connie's and have stopped by in the past to visit your blog, but she suggested I check it out today because of this book. We have just launched into the "first boyfriend" phase with our 14-year old DD and my, that quotation about the adolescent boys certainly hits home! The poem your father wrote you is absolutely priceless. What a precious gift. Janet

TracieClaiborne said...

So THAT'S where you get it! You definitely have a God-given talent for writing. You must get it from your Dad. That poem is awesome. What a great memory.