Mr. Why

There once lived a boy by the last name of Why

who never asked questions or thought.

Without man’s permission to guide his ambition,

he only retorted with ‘ought’.

When sitting in class, he would look to the board

to see what the teacher would draw.

But in holding his pencil, Why happened to stencil

a world that was nothing he saw.

When the boy with the last name of Why hit his teens

he absorbed all he saw like a sponge.

From the telly, to talking, to music and walking

a brain with no sense took the plunge.

By the time Why was ready for college,

he didn’t quite know how to cope

when a girl who asked questions

and offered suggestions

so lassoed his heart with her rope.

Why was smitten by Reason and Logic

but dumped them to date who he ‘ought’.

And so he wed Yes

through unspoken distress

as that’s what he’d always been taught.

When Why had his fifth kid and counting

he taught them to never speak out.

As each would accept

that their brains were inept,

no son would have reason to shout.

When beatings broke out in the village

Why bolted the beams on his door

and told his dear wife,

that the reason for strife

was solely to blame on the poor.

Despite the fine glasses and linen

Why still could not see with his eyes

which is why the return of dear Reason

shocked most into seeing the lies.

One Why broke the mold and asked questions,

another grew up and sought change-

A brother wed Facts and not Fiction

which Why had declared was deranged.

Near the end, Why did call up old Answer

the friend from his youth who’d lost touch

and opened his heart to a wisdom

he never had valued as much.

When Answer coughed through the receiver,

he told Why where he had gone wrong

in trading his steps for a stepper

and assuming the shell of a song.

Why finally did make the connection,

that altered the years he had spurned.

Too troubled to question the questions,

through Answer and Reason, he learned.

-Amy Struthers


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