Treasure Island

shannon wright

(1968 / stuttgart, germany)

The Purpose


Purpose? My purpose?
I never bothered with that question until recently.

You see, middle age has settled in my bones and in my psyche.
Frequently, I feel as untethered as a ship at sea.

I have found myself to be of real value to a very few people.
The good news is they are the only people I find that really matter.

My wonderful, amazing, awe-inspiring children.
And lest I forget, I am a meaningful part of their grown-up worlds.

My children know my most grievous mistakes and yet they honor me.
My children know my weakest areas and yet they fortify and lift me.
My children know my horrific lapses in judgment and yet don't judge.
My children know my most glaring flaws and see right past them.

I am frightened and inspired by the fact that my children find my advice sound and my experience worth consideration.

Some days, when I am feeling completely purposeless, they are the only things keeping me tethered to this world.

At times I regret things I have (or haven't) done, but that is fruitless and dangerous thinking.

Regrets I may have, but serendipity intervened, allowing my children to blossom in the face of hardship and sometimes adversity.

So I am humbled, that as my children mature into full-fledged, they are independent, free-thinking, delightful human beings.

I question my purpose no longer.


-Shannon Wright
June 19,2014
FLW, MO

Submitted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Edited: Thursday, June 19, 2014

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Topic(s): life

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

Feeling down about not having a job and not feeling like I have a purpose. As I started to write (feeling quite sorry for myself) I realized that I DO have a purpose. Even though most of my children are grown (23,21, almost 19 and almost 17) I am still an example to them, a mentor in certain ways and they definitely come to me for advice. Especially my 18 (almost 19) year old daughter.

Comments about this poem (The Purpose by shannon wright )

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  • Saadat Tahir (6/19/2014 4:02:00 PM)

    My children know my most grievous mistakes and yet they honor me.
    My children know my weakest areas and yet they fortify and lift me.
    My children know my horrific lapses in judgment and yet don't judge.
    My children know my most glaring flaws and see right past them.

    you are lucky to be able to say and feel that... not too common you know
    this is sure a reason to stop you despairing in its tracks

    very nice

    liked (Report) Reply

  • Colleen Courtney (6/19/2014 12:57:00 PM)

    Wow! You and I have such similar lives right now! I also am one of the unemployed and mother to a 19 year old daughter who will be 20 at the end of August. About 10 years ago I started questioning my existence, purpose etc.
    While reading this I got this uncanny feeling that you had somehow managed to read my thoughts. I can attest to the validity of each lines wisdom. I guess it is true that with age we gain an innate knowledge of life's wisdoms.
    Have added to my favorites and thanks for sharing! (Report) Reply

Read all 3 comments »

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