Thursday, February 23, 2012

Poem: "I'd Rather be the Father"

I receive daily emails from The Writer's.Almanac with Garrison.Keillor. Here is today's poem, that really struck a chord with me. Can't wait to share it with Mr. Jem.

I'd Rather be the Father

Right from the start, it's easier to be the father: no morning
nausea, no stretch marks. You can wait outside the

delivery room and keep your clothes on. Notice how
closely the word mother resembles smother, notice

how she is either too strict or too lenient: wrong for giving up
everything or not enough. Psychology books blame her

for whatever is the matter with all of us while the father
slips into the next room for a beer. I wanted to be

the rational one, the one who told a joke at dinner.
If I were her father we would throw a ball across

the lawn while the grill fills with smoke. But who
wants to be the mother? Who wants to tell her what

to wear and deliver her to the beauty shop and explain
bras and tampons? Who wants to show her what

a woman still is? I am supposed to teach her how to
wash the dishes and do the laundry only I don't want

her to grow up and be like me. I'd rather be the father
who tells her she is loved; I'd rather take her fishing

and teach her to skip stones across the lake of history;
I'd rather show her how far she can spit.

"I'd Rather be the Father" by Faith Shearin, from Moving the Piano. © 
Stephen F. Austin University Press, 2011. Reprinted with permission. (buy now)


Oak said...

She missed the part about stretched out lady parts. That's a big factor in wanting to be the father!

But seriously, that is a lovely poem. spot on.

Emma said...

I love this poem! I've actually thought about a lot of the things discussed in it before.

ICLW #26

Krissi said...

Love that!
Congrats on your pregnancy! I remember featuring your blog eons ago...haven't been in a while and I'm so glad you're doing well!
I would love to feature your success story on my blog! Here's the info:
Thanks so much in advance! Good luck!

Kechara said...

That's a really powerful poem, thanks for sharing it!


Kristen {} said...

Great poem...thanks for sharing!

Stacie said...

Hey, just checking in on you--hoping all is well.