Leading with my chin
As an old man now, I aspire
to be somebody who can take a punch –
not a speed bag’s wobbly pummeling,
mind you, but a stolid heavy bag full of grit,
eye-bolted solidly through a ceiling beam
and not in some gymnasium for anyone
to try but maybe a garage or cellar,
collecting dust in the corner but still intact.
Somebody who can take a punch if need be
and absorb the blow from any angle,
any adversary and not be moved
more than an inch or two off dead center.
Going through life then, leading with my chin,
not from haughtiness or spunk but with poise
and a quiet faith, bearing the blows of whatever
rough-housing opponents may cross my path.
To be somebody who can take a punch,
take a punch, take a punch and not hit back.
O child of God, aspire to the love that allows
an innocent man to turn his cheek for just one more.