by Rong Xin Choy

Unclench those little fists, my child.
I can see the white of your knuckles.
Are you spoiling for a fight?

Well, I suppose then that you are just afraid-
I think that you think you will use them if you have to.
Although I should say-
That they won't do much damage-
Except that you might bruise them-
So put them away.

I can see the marks in your palms-
Let's trim those nails,
 Shall we?

Look here, my child. 
Unglaze those eyes.
Blink out the tears that are blurring your vision-
Can you see better now? 

It's alright to let them flow.
Release them, wet your flushed little cheeks-
You're not any lesser for shedding them.
So cry as much as you like-
As loud or as soft as you like-
In any fashion.
Until you are done with it.

Let me know when you are finished-
I'll be right outside.
I'll have cookies. 

Unpurse your lips little one-
You look a little silly with your mouth in a line.
Let them swell up and ripen into a smile.

People will take from you many things, 
And it will be hard-
But send them on their way with a smile.
They cannot steal something you give away free.

Close your eyes, child-