No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement.
Bitter are the tears of a child: Sweeten them. Deep are the thoughts of a child: Quiet them. Sharp is the grief of a child: Take it from him. Soft is the heart of a child: Do not harden it.
I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.
How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because some day in life you will have been all of these.
At work, you think of the children you have left at home. At home, you think of the work you’ve left unfinished. Such a struggle is unleashed within yourself. Your heart is rent.
Cultural expectations shade and color the images that parents-to-be form. The baby product ads, showing a woman serenely holding her child, looking blissfully and mysteriously contented, or the television parents, wisely and humorously solving problems, influence parents-to-be.
I cannot go to school today” Said little Peggy Ann McKay. “I have the measles and the mumps, A gash, a rash and purple bumps. My mouth is wet, my throat is dry. I’m going blind in my right eye. My tonsils are as big as rocks, I’ve counted sixteen chicken pox. And there’s one more – that’s seventeen, And don’t you think my face looks green? My leg is cut, my eyes are blue, It might be the instamatic flu. I cough and sneeze and gasp and choke, I’m sure that my left leg is broke. My hip hurts when I move my chin, My belly button’s caving in. My back is wrenched, my ankle’s sprained, My ‘pendix pains each time it rains. My toes are cold, my toes are numb, I have a sliver in my thumb. My neck is stiff, my voice is weak, I hardly whisper when I speak. My tongue is filling up my mouth, I think my hair is falling out. My elbow’s bent, my spine ain’t straight, My temperature is one-o-eight. My brain is shrunk, I cannot hear, There’s a hole inside my ear. I have a hangnail, and my heart is … What? What’s that? What’s that you say? You say today is ………….. Saturday? G’bye, I’m going out to play!
You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.
Recently a young mother asked for advice. What, she wanted to know, was she to do with a 7-year-old who was obstreperous, outspoken, and inconveniently willful? ‘Keep her,’ I replied…. The suffragettes refused to be polite in demanding what they wanted or grateful for getting what they deserved. Works for me.