What do you see?

cowboy

 

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Do you see just another old man with lines written upon his face?

Chiseled and worn, taking up valuable space?

Can you tell what each crag or scar represents?

Or does my demeanor leave you impatient and spent?

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Neck of raw leather, hands worn, calloused and crooked.

You have unfairly judged me from the moment you looked.

For my hollow eyes have seen more than you know.

knowledge trapped in an aging body misshapen by blows.

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Did you know as a lad I rode skateboards of wood?

And enjoyed jumping my bike over a stations wagons hood?

Stole when I was ten and then lied to the end

Rode horses, shot birds and even my friend

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

I once boosted a truck and wrecked it one night

Was scared to death every time I got into a fight

Tried my best to be the center of everyone’s attention

My own worst enemy I was with little prevention.

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Can you see a boy who put social status above education

Passed the GED to keep from starvation

I followed the crowd never learning to win

Repeating devilish behaviors now and again

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

A man with temper as fierce as his pride

Yelling and screaming with fire in my eye

Knocked down and beat up Id stand up for more

Kicking and screaming at every slammed door

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

A wife and a family came into my life

a house, a job and economic strife

My personality chased many people away

I cared for them all but they couldn’t just stay

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Family members who passed, my heart ached for them so

Time and God have a funny way of helping you to let go

Jobs came and they went all at great cost

A career finally found I was no longer lost

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Can you see my struggle through loss every day?

My family does as it gets in the way

No longer carefree and fun, but the safety police instead

Images of suffering and dangers trapped deep in my head

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

In my forties I finally discovered myself

Found a lad who’d been left for dead on a shelf

Yes life’s responsibilities had been weighing me down

A wife so in love never letting me drown

Young man what do you see when you look down upon me?

Mission work, married life, a ranch, and the firehouse it’s true

Learned many hard lessons I can pass on to you

So listen intently for it will come to bare

The man in the mirror you to shall soon share.

When you look down upon me remember this to the end.

“Behind the eyes of every old man is a young man wondering what the hell happened?”-James Franceschi

 

 

 

 

 

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