• Brian M Winningham

Three Things

Three things I learned from my very first breath:

However well you do; next time you must do better yet.

Do exactly as I say, but don’t you dare do what I do.

Children must not speak unless they are spoken to.


Three things I learned as a child where no harbour was safe:

That being the case, I always did what I could to escape.

I excelled in responsibilities often well beyond my years.

I took my beatings without flinching but not without tears.


Three things I learned just before I became a man:

I became more lost and more scared, the harder I ran.

Every opportunity presented to me just seemed to shatter.

I had to regard my poor choices and how much they matter.


Three things I learned making my way in a life full of danger:

How could my body ever fail me?! I was an Airborne Ranger!

I became strong, and hard, and competent, and crazed.

Things had to change or I’d be consumed by my inner rage.


Three things I learned as a father, a husband, and lover.

My life works out best, when I don’t sound like thunder.

What I want and what’s likely, right now, may not match.

Hold your loves tightly, until that final visit from ol’ Scratch.


Three things I learned so far, racing toward my demise:

The past got me to now and can never, ever be revised.

The future isn’t mine to discern, divine, or even dissect.

All I own is this precious moment, and hopefully the next.

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