It's a funny, sad world we live in:
In Juneau, Alaska there's an annual poetry competition
for local residents. If you win, your poem is displayed within city transit buses for the period of 1 year's time. You may only enter once and each poem must be 10 lines or less. Categories are divided up by age between adults and children with winners being chosen from each age bracket.
Last year, my eldest daughter wrote the following: "Fairies, fairies, all about. Fairies, fairies, more than you can count. Fairies are real it's true. You see them without a clue. They're in the shine of every ray. Spot them while you may."
She believes in fairies, doesn't know that fairies could possibly stand for anything else. She doesn't know of the word's dual meaning; but, as adults we see it clearly. A poem that may come across as not being politically correct, not part of "normal", polite conversation, or something that could stir-up controversy may end up ruffling more than a few feathers.
From an adult perspective it's easy to understand why it wouldn't have been chosen as a winning entry.
This year, my youngest daughter entered the competition with these words: "Unicorns, unicorns, I love you. Unicorns, unicorns, love me too."
She wanted to title it "Unicorns", and so we did. Perhaps, not the most original; but, definitely straight forward and simple, right?
I had no idea that unicorns are a controversial, adult-themed subject
too! Society is twisting all the innocence and making it unholy.
Extending youth into adulthood by extending the magic but
The jury is still out on the poem titled "Unicorns" but I understand, on many levels, why it may not win. Here's what I do know:1.) We are all anomalies.
Some perhaps more so than others; but, all with our own gifts and quirks.2.) Imagination is important.
It's what makes the world come alive. It makes the impossible possible.3.) Childhood innocence should not be stamped out nor should it be robbed of its inherent magic and beliefs.
Stop stealing the topics of children's lore, the essence of what their childhood books are made of, and twist the symbols and words into something they were never intended to mean or be purposed for.
We can deep, belly laugh over the knowledge of why people riding a bus may, or may not, want to think of "fairies, fairies, all about"
. However, in the context of a young girl (just 9 years old at the time) who believes in fairies one should be able to see past the adult response to the innocence behind it; smile and let it touch your heart in a sympathetic, empathetic, understanding, "bless her heart"
kind of way. Same is true for the 8 year old girl-child and her belief in unicorns.
Sad to think poetry can't be accepted for the way it simply is. Childhood words without anything but purity behind it. No double meaning, no tongue in cheek; unadulterated, non-adult-like, no adult thematic present. What have we come to as a people if we can't see a child's worlds for what they are and what they are not?
"Let them be little" and when you're grown be grown. Stop reverting back and focus in fully on where you're at.
I'm proud of my girls. They rhymed their words. They each wrote a poem! They are learning, growing, and coming into their own. They are children with rich imaginations who simply gave us a glimpse into the worlds of their own making. They're proud of themselves. Filled with excitement at having written down a poem and entered it into a contest. This is where it all begins.
"Let them be little".
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