Poem: Jacket of Acceptance by Scott C. Waring

Jacket of Acceptance by Scott C. Waring.

I grow, listen, learn then grow again.
I bring home a perfect report card, in hopes of the bicycle promised.
Father calls it a lie and readies his belt.
I call it a broken promise and a lost hug.

I lay in bed listening to yelling till I nod off upon a damp pillow.
Mother calls it healthy discussions.
I call it humiliation and intimidation.

I lay on the sofa pondering my future.
Mother calls me spoiled rotten.
I call it a lost childhood mixed with feelings of invisibility.

A summer job for a jacket of acceptance, but instead the money went to my father.
Father calls it my duty to the family.
I call it a lost opportunity to break out of shyness.

I read books at my bedroom desk.
Father calls me lazy and unappreciative.
I call it an escape from me.

I work my way through school.
My father calls it a waste of time.
I called it financial independence.

I study for exams and construct plans for tomorrow.
My Dean of Counseling calls me overly Controlling.
I call it trying to obtain the desired effects.

I leave to Asia to take a job.
My Asian friend says I’m taking advantage of his people.
I say I am dedicating my future to the education of his people.

I loosen up and joke a bit.
My wife calls me childish and immature.
I call it relinquishing my control.

My son is born.
My friend calls him a weighty responsibility and stress.
I call him the center of my universe.

I allow my wife’s parents to move in.
My subconscious tells me I’m in for trouble.
I call it giving my son the opportunity to be loved by many.

I answer my wife’s questions about my youth.
She calls it insufferably painful and gloomy.
I call it the road that led me into her loving arms.