Parents Shouldn’t Have to Say

Your sister is not a chair.
Don't put bacon in your hair.
No, you can't keep snakes in there.
Yes, you DO need underwear.
Your dress is not a napkin,
and neither is my face.
Baths are not an option.
Going potty's not a race.
I'm sure the dog likes whip cream,
but not inside her ear.
A shirt is not for eating.
A fork is not a spear.
You can't ride on the cat,
or swing on Daddy's beard.
I hope you know we love you,
even though you're kinda' weird.

-B.C. Byron
I’m not sure what game this is, but I don’t like it

Before I comment on this poem, yes, I did notice that the kid in the drawing only ended up with 3 toes on each foot, but 4 fingers on each hand. This is what’s referred to as “creative license” and is representative of the oddball nature of my poems. If you go back through my previous posts, you’ll find an inconsistent number of digits on many of the characters I draw. When I do poetry readings, this issue seems to come up with the little kids frequently. But consider this, that kid is already riding on a giant cat, wielding a fork and spoon as weapons, and wearing a load of bacon in her hair. Is the three-toe thing really the problem in this picture? This isn’t even the strangest character I’ve done. Not by far.

Now, about the poem. As a parent, I’ve often found myself uttering phrases that I had never conceived of prior to having children. After going to the doctor to have a blob of clay dug out of my first daughter’s nose, I thought I had a pretty good story (this event inspired my poem Nose Goblin). But the stories got odder as our family went from one kid to three. Siblings really feed off each other’s wacky ideas and put us grownups in a mode of constant vigilance. Any time a new object enters the house I think, “Will this piece of candy fit in a nostril?”, “If I were 6, what would I be tempted to taste in this toolbox?”, “How badly will this damage the walls if it’s swung on the end of a jump rope?” I start trying to predict every possible scenario in which our child could get into trouble. Thinking back to my own childhood, I’m now realizing that the toddler stuff is not half as weird, or dangerous, as the things I did as a teen. If you want to know more about my teenage antics, read my poem post about a kid using his little brother as a yo-yo. I hope I’m ready for all that when it comes.

I suppose all these things will seem endearing when I’m an old man and missing my kids that have moved out of the house and on to their own grown up adventures. I also have to admit that I may be to blame for some of the odd events at our house. Writing poems about kids with bacon hair and sharing them at my kids’ school can sometimes have that effect. Please do remember though, kids; whether all your craziest ideas are 100% your own or come straight from your screwball parents’ examples, they love you. It stays true forever, even though you’re kinda’ weird.

Published by B.C. Byron

I’m a children’s author, poet, father of 3 girls, and electrical engineer. My first book, A Cat Named Lump, is available on Amazon,, and Google Books. I post new poems and illustrations every week.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: