I am a sleeping bear
with the richest hide of tan,
Try and wake me if you dare,
But none too many can.
You can poke and you can tease;
I may grumble, I may moan,
But in a deep passivity
I have made my humble home.
A bear unlike my kin,
Yes indeed I stand apart,
For while I may have thickened skin,
It hides a timid heart.
So sleep is what I choose,
And I choose sleep because it’s safe,
For even the strongest sinews
will give way to strain and fray.
One hundred times you’ll shake me,
One hundred times I will ignore,
One hundred one? Now that will break me
and this sleeping bear will roar.
So the moral here is clear,
The warning; plain to see
I am a sleeping bear
and you’d do well to leave me be.
You held my hand when I was young,
I looked up and saw more than my father,
I saw the first man I would ever love,
And the mould for each man thereafter.
You showed me the beauty of strength
when it’s blended with a gentle core,
How to appreciate all that I have,
While still pushing myself to be more.
You taught me the value of family,
And that the brain is vessel to feed,
You taught me selflessness and humility,
And the world between want and need.
You taught me how to seek respect,
And showed me how to self-reflect,
How to always reach for the stars,
And how to never accept anything less.
All this and more you have shown me,
And for all this and more I give praise,
You have made me the woman I am,
And I will love to ’til the end of my days.
My Daddy hitted a man,
There was lots of blood and I sawed
that when daddy hitted the man,
the man went to sleep on the floor,
And daddy had on that face,
Like the one when he hitted my mum
and she cried and cried and cried
and kept asking him what she had done,
But daddy, he said it was fine;
He was grumpy but now he’s OK,
That the man is going to wake up,
That the blood will all go away,
He said “Big Man, don’t worry your head,”
(I like it when he calls me Big Man)
“I just want to take a quick ride
in the back of this cool police van!”
And he promised that he’d come back home
to read me a story, so I can sleep,
But… why didn’t he read one just now
to the man who’s asleep at his feet?
Don’t let anyone tread on your dreams;
They’re each graciously worthy of light,
Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t;
Because you can, just as long as you fight.
Stop doubting what lives in your heart;
It knows so much more than your mind,
Stop thinking that emotion is weakness;
There’s great strength in a love of your kind.
Never forget all that living has taught you,
And pay attention – the lessons don’t stop,
Never be ashamed of how much you shine;
You were destined to reach for the top.
Keep dreaming and loving and learning,
Keep your mind open to all that you see,
Keep the pain; you will learn how to shape it,
And become what you hoped you would be.
(P.S. Just some extra advice…
Fret no more about being a geek,
You’ll be surprised just how quickly things change;
Geeks are now quite delectably chic!)
This piece was inspired by a prompt on Pooky’s Poems, where we were encouraged to write poems to our teenage selves.
What was then treated as geekiness, I now proudly call intelligent worldliness, what was then fat, I now say is womanly, what was then hypersensitive I now call altruistic and what was then daydreaming is now ambition.
Everything I hated about myself then I adore now… Isn’t hindsight a b****?