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Dear Dad

You are the youngest daughter in your family. Your father is demanding that you tell him how much you love him. In your own words, tell him what you really feel about his question. What are you prepared to say in response to his demand?

The above is a suggested blog post for the Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature unit which I am doing at University. This struck a chord with me. My own father died some 10 years ago. It is his birthday this month. I was unable to be with him in the final days of his life. He asked for us not to go down to see him. We had said our face to face goodbyes about a month earlier. I rang every day. My dad was not one to say “I Love You” and did not expect his manly sons to say it either. It was just sort of understood. I could tell my mother, as could my brothers, but to show emotions in front of my father would have been seen as weakness by him.

So, now that I have done a mindfulness course; now that I am in touch with my emotions and stand unafraid to speak them. Here is a poem, that I would write for my father. Or if you like, one that Cornelia would have written to her father the King.

You held me when I was small

kept me safe from all

that scared me in the night

or gave me a fright. 

 

You held my hand on the first day of school

you brushed my hair so I looked real cool

you put food on the table, a roof over my head

you shook my hand when you sent me to bed.

 

You carried me from the car, asleep

you taught me life lessons which I keep

you cheered while I took a bow on stage

at times you scolded me, “act you age”.

 

You gave everything that you could give

I prayed to God that you would live

It’s hard to write now as I shed a tear

we were never close but you were always near.

 

If I had the time to live over again

I would be there to share your pain

“I’m doing alright” you would lie

why did you have to go and die?

 

before I could tell you

I love you.

You see dad, its not the things you gave me that makes me love you. Its that you taught me to be a man.; to be responsible, to have my own opinion and not to follow the crowds. You taught me to be myself no matter what anyone else thinks. You made it safe for me to come out, when earlier in my life I was too afraid. When everyone else deserted me, you were there. That’s why I love you.

I miss you dad.

Dave

 

 

 

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Modern analogy of King Lear opening?

There is a man who lives in a house.

He has 3 pets; 2 dogs and a cat.

The dogs fight for attention. One always throwing herself into his arms, smothering his face with kisses. The other is always bringing gifts, like expensive pieces of wood newly broken from the outdoor lounge, or pieces of ceramic pot. He knows the man love this pot, so the dog brought part of it to the man at the back door.

The third animal is the cat. The cat does what she bleeding well pleases. She sleeps most of the day, comes for cuddles when SHE wants them and scarpers when she doesn’t. She shares the man’s food, although the man doesn’t share hers. The cat does not like the man’s aftershave or deodorant and makes no secret of the fact. The cat loves because that is what is expected every now and then, and doesn’t care if she is ignored when other things are happening. She would more like to curl up in a ball and go to sleep.

Ok, YES. the man is me. The dogs are Buddy and Gracie and the Cat is Brandy…my pet name for her is Puss Puss. It occurred to me this afternoon when I was hanging the washing out just how the two dogs are just like Goneril and Regan, willing to do whatever they thought they needed to to gain my love and approval. They don’t realise I would love them even if they were naughty. The cat is indifferent. She can live without me, however she is annoying when I don’t wish her to sleep on my bed and close the door. She scratches the door very loudly. I have timed her. She can keep it up for 12 minutes straight… and just when you think all is quiet and she has settled for the night…she will start again. I think she is like Cordelia, because she doesn’t let me cuddle or love her more than she is willing to. When she has enough, she pushes away.

The cat knows however, that my love is there for her and she is my favorite. She doesn’t try to win favours by bringing me gifts, or jump into my arms when I am trying to do something else, She patiently waits for me to be ready to give her the cuddles and scratches that she needs.

Hence, I feel like a King, in this palace, my home.

 

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