What takes the joy from the boy?

What takes the joy from the boy?  When did he start taking himself so seriously?

When did he stop making noises for things, impersonating everything?  Why the silence?

Where are the snide remarks and the one-liners?  When did "not thinking before you speak" turn into not saying anything at all for fear of saying the wrong thing?  The cat got your tongue?

What takes the joy from the boy?

When did he start forgetting how to laugh or relax?  Where are the foolish pranks?  When did he stop pulling a fast one?  When did he stop caring about getting the last word?

Where did the stubborn rebellion go?  What happened to the never-say-die attitude?  Where did that little guy go?  What happened to him along the way?

Where did you take one too many on the chin?  What was the thing that broke your back?  When did you lose your will to fight?  What happened to you, little guy?

What takes the joy from the boy?

What takes the joy from the toys?  Why don't you go outside and play anymore?  Why do you stay inside so much sitting and starring at stationary objects?  Why the boredom?

Why don't you ask questions any more?  Where did your curiosity go?  Don't you want to find out what's over there or around that corner?  Why not?

What takes the joy from the boy?

Is it something some said to you way back when?  Is it something somebody did to you that robbed you blind?  When was the day the "that something" inside you died?

Why don't you get in trouble anymore?  Are you too scared to venture out and take a risk...to act, to speak, to feel something that might get you chided, scolded?  What gives?

Don't you ever want to climb that tree just for the fun of it?  Don't you ever just want to dance with danger to see if you will live to tell about it?  Why do you play it so safe these days, son?

What takes the joy from the boy?

Where did the spunk go?  The piss and vinegar.  The vim and vigor?  What are you scared of...failure, exposure, loss, unknowns, criticism?  Come on, speak up, young man!  What say ye?

Where is the fire in your belly?  Where is the laughter from your belly?  Who took your guts out?  Who emasculated you along the way?

Have you done this to yourself?  Are these prison walls self-constructed expectations of perfection?  Who told you that it had to be just so or like this or that?

What takes the joy from the boy?

When did you stop doing things for the love of them and instead worshipped what they gave you or where they got you?  When did you start thinking too hard and straining for just the right words?

Don't you miss the days where you ran woodward--deep into the forrest--and climbed the highest rough-barked cherry tree swaying in the eastern breeze of the lake?

Don't you miss the youthful zest for life that drove you crazy?  Crazy for that girl.  Crazy for that game winning shot?  Crazy for that next adventure?  Crazy for whatever, whenever, wherever.  Hugh, is that still in there, buddy?

What takes the joy from the boy?

What field dresses him along the way leaving his carcass cooling on the earth's surface?  What makes him despise manhood with all its loss of innocence and transcendence?  What makes him capitulate to the adult world of getting your act together and taking the show on the road?

Where did the supple heart of the boy flee to?  Where is it hiding and why is it hiding?  When did yearning give into yawning?

What takes the joy from the boy?

He is a figment of who he was.  A fragment of what he was.  He is looking for himself, backtracking to see where he lost his way, backpacking to find his way forward into the jungle of other men doing the same.  Lost in the woods, lost in the weeds.

What takes the joy from the boy?

Proverbs 15:13 - A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.

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