The young man was growing up
Becoming more than a boy, more a mystery,
Growing taller, a little wiser,
Ready to take on the world.
He knew where he was going, and
What he wanted to do.
What would feed his heart, light up his eyes,
Warm his soul?
“Where is my place, in all this world?”, he asked.
“What is my dance?”
“What is my song?”, daring
to wonder if he really mattered, if he even would be heard.
Moving ahead, he’d walked away
From the devils in his past,
And those who’ve told him no,
Or he’s bad, or not good enough.
Head held high, he marched on
Taking the challenges of today
Making them his stairs
Climbing to the next level.
He looks to others as his heroes
Looking for his gods in the words of others,
His theology found dwelling in his heart,
Within his soul.
Arising out of his childhood muck,
He slips out, staggering to his feet,
One foot now in front of the other,
Free, now, to walk strong and tall.
A deep breath, clearing his lungs, his mind,
He looks ahead, finding his stars,
Adding more fuel to the soul fire
Coming to life within his chest.
Coming into his manhood,
The rages of childhood pain slough off
Now unneeded armor, and he moves ahead
Finally free to fly, to dance among the stars.
Others dance in unfettered joy
Watching his feet move to his own rhythm,
Feeling the beat, raising his deepening voice in song
Becoming what he is becoming, finally free.
Long into the night, his feet move to the drum,
Sweat drenched chest taking in the cold starry air
His voice reaching to the treetops, the moon,
His gods joining him in the chorus.
His own song at last his own,
Toes solid on his own familiar dirt,
Saplings becoming trees, watered by his tears,
Feeding on his new found song.
The old fears, the old anger, and rage
Fall farther back on the trail now dark in shadow,
Ahead, the dawn of his new manhood
Glimmers in the first of tomorrow’s light.
Tomorrow will find him moving ahead,
Feet hard on his trail, aimed straight and true,
his heart beating with his new found love
from his gods, his self, his soul.
Years later, he will look back down this trail,
His journey rich and right,
Well satisfied, well fed, and he will know
He is, at last, Love.
–Neal Lemery 12/9/12