Michael’s Star Poem

My son Michael is your typical 12 year old boy. He loves to fish and go shooting with his dad. He loves playing video games and spending time with friends. But occasionally something comes over him…I find him reading a book, usually something Harry Potteresque, and he is stricken by the urge to write. Much like his mother, writing comes naturally.

When certain opportunities present themselves I enjoy taking the time to teach my kids about life…why it is I tell them not to run with scissors or, in this case, the lesson about choices. You see, I teach my children that they are responsible for their lives through the choices they make. From what they eat in the morning for breakfast to how they choose to dress themselves for school, each decision they make will effect thier lives in either a positve way or a negative way…and only THEY have the power to make those choices. Consequently, choices come with a heck of a lot of responsibility. Say you choose to eat a slab of chocolate cake for breakfast…then you also choose to have a stomach ache and a major sugar crash about 2 hours later, right? If you choose to wear an Ohio State t-shirt (BTW GO BUCKS!) here in Gator country then you also choose to be made fun of,no? Although we all know who really rocks the house, you just can’t get away with being a Buckeye in Gator country without at least a few reprocussions. Well, after reading Michael’s poem the other night I was thrilled to know he was actually listening to me the day I gave the lecture on choice making. Finally, something I said made it past the Playstation and the cheese doodles and into his lunkin’ head! My work here is done. No, seriously…I am so proud of this poem for many reasons. It tells so much about my son’s character and makes me hopeful when I think of the impact this young man could potentially have on his generation. You read it and decide for yourselves. I’m sure Michael would love to know what you think!

Michael’s Star Poem

If an artist makes a picture out of words, does it mean that it isn’t art?
Or if two people are blood relatives but don’t get along, is it the other’s fault for being different?
When you trip and fall, it’s not the stone’s fault.
And if you act in a fool-hardy way, is it the bystander’s fault for staring?
When you make a mistake, don’t go blaming others.
Is it not you who made the mistake?
And when you choose to do wrong, you alone have made the decision.
Not me, not the rock, not the artist, not the relative.
If I made this into a circle instead of a star, that is my choice and mine alone.
When the waves rise and destroy your sandcastle, do not blame the water.
For it was you who made it where the waves could damage it.
And if the wind blows and makes you cold, it is not the wind’s fault.
You chose alone not to prepare.
And is it the snow’s fault for making the leaves on the trees die?
So as the artist draws and the wind blows and the people watch and the waves crash and the rock sits and the family is different…life is life.
And it will take it’s course.
You have no one to blame but yourself for your own actions.
So be it.

-Written by Michael Warner, 12 years old

21 thoughts on “Michael’s Star Poem

  1. Holly

    His poem gave me goosebumps Teresa, WOW! That was just pure AWESOMENESS! 🙂 Please give him a high five for me, what wisdom! He is listening and you are teaching him some wonderful lessons in life. I know you are just soo proud of him for this amazing creation!! WTG Michael!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Holly. I am pretty fond of Mike. He’s turning out to be quite an amazing young man. So glad you enjoyed his poem! He is flying high right now!:)

  2. Patty

    Oh my gosh Teresa, are you sure that he’s 12? That poem was amazing! Micheal sounds like a very wise person. You can tell he has a great mom & dad to look up to & learn from. Good Job Micheal!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thank you so much Patty. Yep, I’m pretty sure he’s 12…he will be in May anyway. This boy’s full of surprises…I just hope he keeps them the “good” surprises!

  3. Shelley Spicer

    Wow, this poem really spoke to me. It is amazing how much our kids pick up from us and how they are listening even when we are not sure. I love how you have pointed out to your kids how important their choices are. I seem to spend so much time trying to shelter and protect my kids and not enough time letting them make their own mistakes and learn their own lessons. I really love how Michael composed his “Star Poem.” Tell him to keep it up, he is a star to me!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thank you Shelley! It’s so hard to parent these days and ya know what…there just are no guarantees! We can only do the best we can and pray for the rest, right? Kids have got to know they have the power to influence thier lives even now when they are young! I think that when kids know that, when they realize they have power to make choices that will directly effect their lives, they feel empowered and have the incentive they need to make good choices. One can only hope!

  4. Jen

    WOW! This is something that needs submitted somewhere. This guy has TALENT! It’s amazing how we “drill” into our children, life’s lessons, and how amazingly it gets past the video games and junk food…LOL! But, you have right to be proud of Michael and to brag about him! Good job Michael! Keep those surprises coming!
    O-H-I-O!!!!!!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thanks Jen! Half the battle is competing with video games and junk food, right? LOL! The day what mom says comes before the twinkies and the DS is definately a good day in my book!

  5. Christian

    I’m liking this kid…a lot. Half Catholic and half Buddhist? The last time I read something this simple and expressive, it came from the Dalai Lama, no kidding.

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thanks Christian! While we don’t necessarily practice Buddhism I have done a lot of reading along those lines and do incorporate many Buddhist principles into the raising of our children. Simplicity is the key! Life doesn’t have to be complicated…we are the ones who complicate it. I appreciate your comment. It totally made Michael’s day!

  6. Marti

    Accountability is so important…Well stated, Michael. It’s reassuring to know people like you will be in charge of things, someday…I look forward to hearing more poems from you!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Michael is already starting on his next piece. Seeing his work published here and reading all of your wonderful, supportive comments has really inspired him to write more! Thank you so much!

    1. Teresa Post author

      Awesome play on words there Jere….concrete design! Love it! (Jeremy works in construction for those of you who didn’t catch the joke!) You always make us laugh! Thanks for the comment!

  7. Sara Warner

    This brings me to tears! What a proud aunt I am today! He is such a wise young man with an amazing mom to teach him awesome life lessons! I’m so proud to call you guys family! I think we have a Walt Whitman in the making! 🙂

    1. Teresa Post author

      Thank you Sara. The kids have all adopted my love of reading and writing…for that I am so grateful. It’s wonderful to be able to share something so creative with them. They are all constantly amazing me…sometimes for good and sometimes…well, not so good. LOL!

      1. Sara Warner

        I just looked up info on Whitman…and I don’t really think he is a perfect example…but…a poet, nonetheless. He is pretty controversial.

        1. Teresa Post author

          Um yeah, I’ve read a lot of Whitman and while I love his work, personally he is questionable in my opinion! LOL! Then again he’s an artist…a lot of them are questionable to some extent. It’s part of what makes them great I guess!

  8. amanda

    I love his/your Buddhist tendencies. I’m a total Christ-follower, but I think if we all added a little Buddha-ness to our Christian-ness, we all might do a little better…

    1. Teresa Post author

      Oh me too. I am a Catholic but I do believe there are aspects of each religion that can be learned from and incorporated to some extent into our lives to make us better human beings in general. And it seems to be working…at least for now, right? LOL!

  9. Carolyn

    Kid, you are wise beyond your years, and talented too.

    I searched google for a “star” poem and this is what I found.

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