Letter To My Ten Year Old Self (English sonnet)

by Ben Pickard   Feb 26, 2018


I write to you in hopes you understand
That life will forge a track that's full of bends.
Despite attempts to sow and shape the land,
The corn will rot each time you make amends.
The ground will freeze, the river burst its banks,
And flowers wilt before they even bloom.
The soldiers you have placed will break their ranks;
The gas will fill the trenches with its fumes.
But here I am, a man of thirty-six
Who has survived and journeyed through the squalls,
So build your life with mortar and with bricks -
We stumble, yes, but do not have to fall.
I wonder if the past still holds some sway -
If yes, then there might be another way.

--

Ben Pickard 2018

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Latest Comments

  • 9 months ago

    by Ya----Na

    Ben I am shocked that why no one nominated it. I guess each one of us wants to deliver a message to our younger self & I just hope it becomes possible someday. No doubt why u are every one's favorite.

  • 9 months ago

    by Brenda

    Ben, I just love this! Going back and talking to your 10 yr old self and reflecting on what you've been through thus far. Absolutely brilliantly done!

  • 9 months ago

    by Em (marmite)

    Hi Ben, here we have another wonderfully rhymed and unforced piece by you and one which will resonate with many here, myself included.
    The title is a bit like that paint (I can't remember what it's called) but the caption for it is “it does what it says on the tin”
    1- I love the opening as it goes straight to the point about wanting to ‘warn off’ your 10 year old self in the hope that he'll understand your misdemeanours and that life will throw these hurdles at us time and time again which we have to overcome ourselves sometimes with the support from our loved ones. I absolutely love the imagery you portray here that no matter how much you try and change your mistakes etc you will always come out on top somehow that's what I got from it anyway.
    2- Here I sense a kind of reminiscing of the bad times you've had to deal with (obviously not exactly) and the description is spot on because we can try and try and try but we can only do our best and if our best isn't good enough then two fingers will well and truly be stuck up :) because sometimes no matter what we do it will never be good enough
    3- This was my favourite stanza because it says yes, I've had bad times but the good times will certainly outweigh them and will never bring me down not completely anyway and no matter what I'm going through or have been through I will reach the top again by trying and trying my hardest and we will definitely not fall even if we go stumble and trip occasionally.
    Couplet - what an ending is all I can say!!
    Imagery and rhyming fantastic as ever but still never seems to amazes me
    Em x

    • 9 months ago

      by Ben Pickard

      Em -wonderful comment. thank you.

  • 9 months ago

    by Kitty Cat Lady

    Ben, this really resonates at the mo ... maybe the bends in the track would be less upsetting if we'd expected them? If we'd been warned?
    Then again, if we'd known they were coming but were powerless to change them, we'd be living on tenterhooks, in anticipation of them and that in itself would change the emotional journey, if not the physical one and would stop us from trying in the first place.
    A wonderful, insightful sonnet that flows and rhymes beautifully and is steeped in wisdom. :-) x
    =^.^=

    • 9 months ago

      by Ben Pickard

      You are right, Kitty. And thanks for the comment

  • 9 months ago

    by Tony

    I have been thinking about the past a lot; it's always in the back of my thoughts but has been weighing heavily on my heart lately.

    All the plans that I made, everything I've built in the last ten years is falling apart. I have a feeling of my 18 year old self met me today, he would beat the hell out of me for running with my plan B...

    Maybe everything happens for a reason. But next time I will be building with "mortar and brick"

    • 9 months ago

      by Ben Pickard

      Retrospect is a fine thing, Tony and we can only do the best with what we have to go on at the time.
      We can all kid ourselves and say 'I should have done that' or 'I should have taken that path' but the fact is, there is no glaring signpost telling us to go a certain way.

      Take care, good man and thanks for the comment

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