Saturday, April 04, 2009

from Dorothy Parker

Indian Summer
by Dorothy Parker

In youth, it was a way I had
To do my best to please,
And change, with every passing lad,
To suit his theories.

But now I know the things I know,
And do the things I do;
And if you do not like me so,
To hell, my love, with you!

I recently happened upon this poem by Dorothy Parker. I suppose it's sad to say that it resonated with me, even though I certainly hope that I haven't yet entered the Indian Summer of my life.

Beginning in high school, I was definitely guilty of that chameleon-like behavior which Dorothy describes so laconically. I kept it up until The Child came along, and at that point I seem to have taken on Ms. Parker's Indian Summer attitude.

I have a theory which resulted from my awareness of that phenomenon: maybe my former "lad-pleasing" behavior was actually inspired, unbeknownst to me, by a biological urge to reproduce. Once that happened, I was allowed to be myself and let the chips (or lads) fall as they may.

I have always preferred to do my own thing, although, admittedly, there are those rare occasions when it would be nice to have a companion. When the Child grows up and flies the coop, there will be a void.

Maybe then I'll have to revert to my youthful ways.

Meanwhile, here are a couple of shots from my walk in the park today:

1 comment:

Lynilu said...

First of all, the roses are just beautiful.

Then I have to chuckle at your pensiveness! Perhaps procreation is part of it, but I think before we find "the one," whether it's to join permanently or to reproduce or both, everything is testing the waters. We all experiment with give and take in relationships, far more give than take in the younger years, and then generally coming to a more balanced give and take in our relating as we internalize those experiences. In some cases, bad habits are formed and destructive cycles take place. But generally, it is how we learn what we can/will do and hopefully, eventually, where to draw the line.

I'm in those years that you mention, with the empty nest, and I think about similar things often. I'm quite happy, but set in my ways, and I'm not likely to let myself get into a position of pleasing "the lads" ever again!

I can't imagine myself being what I was when I was younger. Nope. Like me as I am or let me be. And yes, sometimes I'm lonely, but most times I'm simply alone and happy. Friends mean so much more than having "a lad" in my life. If it happens, woo-hoo! If not, okey-dokey!

Nice post, Betty.