Hero

I wrote this poem when I was 16. Blast from the past!

Who is your hero?” The school teacher asked.

Or do you know?” She looked at the class.

Later that day, a young man stood.

He had thought hard—as hard as he could.

Who is my hero?” He wondered out loud.

And he searched the faces of the after-school crowd.

The young man shrugged, but inside he knew

There was something he had to do.

I’ll find me a hero!” the young man said,

And he laid out a plan inside of his head.

Later that week, the boy began.

He’d created a list—step one of his plan.

The list contained names that at a glance,

Were possibly heroes--or at least had a chance.

Then he'd put each name up to the test.

His hero criteria would take care of the rest.

First, there was Dan—a really cool guy.

He had many friends, and the boy wondered why.

He’s on the team, he runs really fast—

Wait, why did he trip that poor kid as he passed?

Look at him now, he’s cussing a storm.

Does he really think that’s part of the norm?

I don’t like that,” the boy thought in spite.

Dan is no hero--I thought I was right.”

Sam was the guy next on the list.

He didn’t have much—you get the gist.

Sam was a boy who had a hard life.

His dad had left work and then left his wife.

But Sam was smiling—as he usually was.

When the boy asked him why, he replied, “Just because.”

The boy was puzzled, and Sam could tell.

There’s so much to live for, and all is well!”

The young man watched as Sam departed.

And deep in his heart a small feeling started.

What a wonderful soul—so grateful and true.

The boy thought about Sam, and the small feeling grew.

He had no idea from where it came.

So he brushed it away, and read the next name.

Tom was a kid who was quite well off.

He was next on the list—he was almost crossed off.

But the boy stopped short—he’d had a thought,

Maybe a rich kid could pass. Why not?"

Dan was rich too, but attitude counts.

The person decides to what he’ll amount.

The boy looked Tom over. He looked at him well.

He didn’t look bad, and was smiling as well.

Tom wandered over, and talked to the boy.

The boy felt noticed, and he swelled with joy.

Their interests differed, but Tom understood.

He talked and listened like a true friend should.

Their talk was over. The boy was alone.

He felt enlightened. If only he’d known.

So that’s what it takes,” he heard himself mumble,

A hero is someone, who is honest and humble.”

He crumpled his list and threw it away.

He’d learned a great lesson that valuable day.

A hero is one who cares about others.

If he knows them or not, he treats them like brothers.

You can’t tell a hero by riches or wealth.

It all depends on the heart and its health.

A hero’s a friend to everyone—

Ready to listen, or just have some fun.

It’s heroes who make this world turn around.

And if you look hard, they’re around to be found!

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