Huang Yongping

Huang Yongping

The farmer
raises his son
to till the land
to feel in the soil
the earth’s promise
to read in the cloud
the rain’s presence
to see in the dawn
a harvest’s hour
and at the dusk
the worth of
daily labor

The teacher
rears a daughter
to good manners
to think then to speak
so as to be reasonable
to seek for information
so as to be intelligent
to report on the truth
rather than the self
and at graduation
the value of

The preacher
nurtures a child
in all righteousness
to be better than good
by setting grander goals
to please every authority
by meeting expectations
to act a dramatic role
by memorizing lines
to recite on a stage
for ovations with


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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One Response to Graduations

  1. a moving commencement lyric

    Liked by 1 person

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