For My Son, Noah, Ten Years Old

For My Son, Noah, Ten Years Old
by Robert Bly

Night and day arrive, and day after day goes by,
and what is old remains old, and what is young remains young, and grows old,
and the lumber pile does not grow younger, nor the
weathered two by fours lose their darkness,
but the old tree goes on, the barn stands without help so many years,
the advocate of darkness and night is not lost.

The horse swings around on one leg, steps, and turns,
the chicken flapping claws onto the roost, its wings whelping and whalloping,
but what is primitive is not to be shot out into the night and the dark.
And slowly the kind man comes closer, loses his rage, sits down at table.

So I am proud only of those days that we pass in undivided tenderness,
when you sit drawing, or making books, stapled, with messages to the world…
or coloring a man with fire coming out of his hair.
Or we sit at a table, with small tea carefully poured;
so we pass our time together, calm and delighted.