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"Pace is all. Rhythm is master. Consistency is your friend."

Saturday, November 25, 2006

This Time It's Saturday with Shel

My son can't get enough of "Where the Sidewalk Ends," by Shel Silverstein. We read from it daily and one poem is never enough. I happened upon this one tonight and I feel compelled to share it. It is so complex in its simplicity; it has so many facets to it in so few words; It could mean one thing to you and another to me - and we'd both be right. That's what's so great about poetry and literature. The interpretation is up to you.

And while I watch news footage of "Black Friday" where people run (over one another) to buy televisions and video game systems, grabbing and pushing their fellow human beings as if being chased by a horrible monster (maybe they are? That one called consumerism?) that will tear them from limb from limb if they don't get out of it's path - It just makes me sad.

It makes me long for the days of childhood when I didn't know what was going on; when I knew Santa's elves were making a few toys for me so that Santa could place them under my Christmas tree; when I thought that everyone looked forward to Christmas because it meant time off from school and candy canes and sugar cookies with green and red sprinkles and ribbons and bows and brightly decorated paper - and not stress and lines longer than those found at Disney World and anger upon seeing someone else grab the last "must have" commodity of the season.

This poem makes me think of that, and so many other things that are wrong with the world right now. And yet, the last stanza gives me hope, too. The hope that is the central theme of this time of year; the hope that does not scream in your ear or beat you over the head until you get it. It's a quiet whisper in your heart that blesses you with the belief in possibility - that maybe 2007 will be different; that maybe you, and the people around you, can make a positive contribution that will change the lives of others; that maybe you can stop talking and start making a fundamental change in your own life - that maybe the world's priorities will begin to shift and people will matter more than money or power.

Then again, you may read something completely different :)


There is a place where the sidewalks ends
And before the street begins,
And there the grass grows soft and white,
And there the sun burns crimson bright,
And there the moon-bird rests from his flight
To cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
And the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And watch where the chalk-white arrows go
To the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
For the children, they mark, and the children, they know
The place where the sidewalk ends.

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At 11/26/2006 11:56:00 AM, Blogger cherylann said...

I loved this entry. I made the mistake of heading to the store you despise on Friday morning to pick up diapers. It was a madhouse. People were plugging up the aisles and being rude. I did pick up a cabbage patch doll for $10 though... and a dvd for $2.50. *shrug* Oh, and the ESM works there and actually makes more than I made when I was a 1 on 1 aide at the high school.
I do love it when you post poems. Your boys are so lucky to have you.
What's a good time to talk this week? I miss you.

At 11/26/2006 03:24:00 PM, Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

This poem is just beautiful. I share your hope for a more peaceful 2007.

And, um, have I told you how much I love your blog? Cuz I do. I REALLY do. Your posts always seem to touch on things that I feel, things that are important to discuss, but things I never get around to posting about.

At 11/27/2006 01:37:00 PM, Blogger Linus said...

cheryl - my response to you is already on your blog :)

MOtR - thank you for your kind words. If I haven't told you, I LOVE your blog as well. Your humor is just what I need on many, many days; Your take on life and it's "drama" is fresh and fun - perfect for someone who is often ranting about political corruption and all that is wrong with the world :)


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