This post goes out to all those people who may have small children.
Mei Yao-chen (1002 – 1060) was a minor official in the court during the Sung dynasty. This poem was how he put his excuse to one of his friends and I love the eloquent simplicity of his feelings and message.
An Excuse for not returning the visit of a Friend
Do not be offended because
I am slow to go out. You know
Me too well for that. On my lap
I hold my little girl. At my
Knees stands my handsome little son.
One has just begun to talk.
The other chatters without
Stopping. They hang on my clothes
And follow my every step.
I can’t get any farther
Than the door. I am afraid
I will never make it to your house.