Monday, February 29, 2016

Poem of the Week 2.29.16

OH, THE PLACES YOU'LL GO 

*Blogger's note: Balancing work, 18 credits, my ministry, my girlfriend, my family, and my two internships has me very confused as of recent. Simply put, I don't know what I want to do with my future, and though I do not graduate until December, societal expectations and my own unrelenting standards have me on the verge of some heavy emotions. Over the years, whenever I have felt this way, I have returned to Dr. Seuss' classic poem. I never received the book myself, but had heard of it so often that I sought it out. I used the regularly joke around in high school that Dr. Seuss is my favorite poet. This poem/story is the reason why. Sometimes I have agreed with it, sometimes not. I am sure I will continue to change my opinion as I live more and more life, but since it's been on my heart and mind so much lately I thought I would share. I mindlessly wrote the added stanzas the other day on the train and for fun I thought would include them. 

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Congratulations!
Today is your day, 

You're off to Great Places! 
You're off and away! 

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You're on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who'll decide where to go.

You'll look up and down streets. Look 'em over with care.
About some you will say, 'I don't choose to go there.'
With your head full of brains, and your shoes full of feet, 
you're too smart to go down any not-so-good street.

And you may not find any
you'll want to go down.
In that case, of course, 
you'll head straight out of town.

It's opener there
in the wide open air.

Out there things can happen
and frequently do 
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.

And when things start to happen, 
don't worry. Don't stew.
Just go right along.
You'll start happening too.

OH! 
THE PLACES YOU'LL GO! 

You'll be on your way up! 
You'll be seeing great sites! 
You'll join the high fliers! 
who soar to high heights.

You won't lag behind, because you'll have the speed.
You'll pass the whole gang and you'll soon take the lead.
Wherever you fly, you'll be best of the best.
Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don't.
Because, sometimes, you won't.

I'm sorry to says so
but, sadly, it's true
that Bang-ups
and Hang-ups
can happen to you

You can get all hung up
in a prickle-ly perch.
And your gang will fly on.
You'll be left in a Lurch.

You'll come down from the Lunch
wuth an unpleasant bump.
And the chances are, then, 
that you'll be in a Slump.

And when you're in a Slump, 
you're not in for much fun.
Un-slumping yourself 
is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked.
Some windows are lighted. But mostly they're dark.
A place that could sprain both elbow and chin! 
Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in? 
How much can you lose? How much can you win? 

And IF you should go in, should you turn left or right...
or right-and-three-quaters? Or maybe not quite? 
Or go around and back and sneak from behind? 
Simple it's not, I'm afraid you will find, 
for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused 
that you'll start in to race
down long and wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, 
headed, I fear, toward a most usless place

The Waiting Place...

...for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.

NO! 
That's not for you! 

Somehow you'll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You'll find the bright places
where boom bands are playing.

Oh, the places you'll go! There is fun to be done! 
There are points to be scored. There are games to be won.
And the magical things you can do with that ball
will make you the winning-est winner of all.
Fame! You'll be famous as famous can be, 
with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.

Except when they don't.
Because, sometimes, they won't.

I'm afraid that some times
you'll play lonely games too.
Games you can't win
'cause you'll play against you.

All Alone! 
Whether you like it or not.
Alone will be something
you'll be quite a lot.

And when you're alone, theres a very good chance
you'll meet things that scare you right out of your pants.
There are some, down the road between hither and yon, 
that can scare you so much you won't want to go on.

But on you will go
though the whether be foul.
On you will go
though your enemies prowl.
On you will go
though the Hakken-Kraks howl.
Onward up many
a frightening creek, 
though you arms may get sore
and your sneakers may leak.

On and on you will hike.
And I know you'll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.

You'll get mixed up of course, 
as you already know.
You'll get mixed up
with many stray birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life's
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with you left.

And will you succeed? 
Yes! You will indeed! 
(98 and 3/4 percent garanteed!) 

KID YOU'LL MOVE MOUNTAINS! 

So...
be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Alenn O'Shea
you're off to Great Places! 
Today is your day! 
Your mountain is waiting.
So... get on your way!" 

Oh The Places I've gone,
In these last few years
Bouncing and bouncing 
Through frolic and fears

Lurching and waiting and hoping and praying
And thinking and singing and loving and hating 
What will I be when I grow up? 
Too late, here I am, is it time to give up? 

Is it time to back down or rework the path? 
The calendar pages
Make me cry, make me laugh

Oh the places I've gone in these last few months
The stuff ain't enough, it's frilly with fluff
To think that the end is only beginning
To think there is more than just losing or winning 
I've travelled to valleys, goosebumps on my face
It was hot and then cold and then wet and then...

Space 

Oh the places I've gone, in the last few words
The train tracks are bumping to the tune of the herds
The noise and the clapping and the shouting and stills 
The limelight, the night life, the  chills and the thrills 
The sense that it makes when things aren't a mess
The hurt that I've felt when the stars were intense

Oh the places I'll go,
If only I'll try 
I want to go back 
to be willing to fly
So I go back to what's there
And what's there is great
I go back to a past 
That has created this state
To hang ups and bang ups and comics and sweats
To Dr. Seuss books 
Grasshoppers and ants 

And when I go back to the start of what's been
I'll smile with pride and then I'll begin 
But in the meantime, to the places that come
It is better to go than it is to run.

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