Childhood Discipline
© By Grady L. Duncan
My body bears no scars;
I never required a stitch;
mental faculties weren’t deranged
by the application of a switch.
When I was not respectful,
or was caught doing wrong,
I knew what to expect.
It was dealt with before long.

Mother would tell my brother,
“Go cut a new growth limb.”
If he was the offending child,
I’d do the same for him.
Finding a flexible peach switch,
that was turning from green to brown,
he stripped off all the leaves,
to keep them from slowing it down.

He would make a few test swings,
to hear that whistling, swooshing sound.
He’d enter with a villainous smile,
but I, a contemptuous frown.
Handing it over to mother,
he’d step back to enjoy the show.
Then mother would grab my left hand,
and round and round I’d go. 

The sting stirred my reflexes,
as I danced and pawed the air,
as if climbing an unseen ladder,
that somehow I wished was there.
The pain brought floods of tears,
and pleading with every breath,
begging for mother’s mercy,
so sure I was nearing death.

Lessons were learned more quickly,
back when I was still small.
Today they’re learned more slowly,
if they are learned at all.
Along came Dr. Spock,
who said that was so cruel,
then CPS and the judges,
began to enforce a new rule.

Then came the counselors,
and the lawyers with their degrees,
to make their ill-gotten fortunes,
charging their exorbitant fees.
The results are generations,
of addicts, whores and thugs,
who degrade moral standards,
many surviving by dealing drugs.

They were left to their own devices,
lest the law was brought to bear,
should a switch or belt be plied,
to their little Derriere.
Now you be the judge;
The best result was wrought by which;…
A few days of being grounded,
or the sting of a limber switch?

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