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What is a Boy?

Between the innocence of babyhood and the dignity of manhood

we find a delightful creature called a boy.

  Boys come in assorted sizes, weights and colors,
but all boys are the same.

Boys are found everywhere, on top of,
inside of, climbing on,
swinging from, running around
or jumping to.

Mothers love them, little girls hate them,
older brothers and sisters

tolerate them,
adults ignore them and Heaven protects them.

A boy is Truth with dirt on its face,
Beauty with a cut on its finger,

Wisdom with bubble gum in its hair
and the hope of the future
with a frog in its pocket.

When you want him to make a good impression,
his brain turns to jelly,
or else he becomes a savage,
sadistic jungle creature
bent on destroying the world.

A boy is a composite,
he has the appetite of a horse,
the digestion of a sword swallower,

the energy of an atom bomb,
the curiosity of a cat,

the lungs of a dictator,
the shyness of a violet

and when he makes something,
he has five thumbs on each hand.

A boy is a magical creature,
you can lock him out of your workshop,
but you can't lock him out of your heart.

Might as well give up, he is your captor,
your jailer,
your boss and
your master,

a freckled face,
pint size,
cat chasing bundle of noise.

But when you come home at night
with only the shattered
pieces of your hopes and dreams,
he can mend them like new
with the two magic words,
"HI, DAD!"

The above piece was written by Alan Beck and given to me by the New England Mutual Life Insurance Company circa 1954.