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Homage To Young Men (Nizlopi)

I want to talk to all the young men out there It’s for the women too, but especially the men, 'cos it’s tough to be a young man in this world You have to face so much heartbreak and loss In love and career and life It’s easy to forget the meaning and give up To burn up or sell out to addictions, despair or greed Easy to forget that life’s a journey with a beginning, a middle and an end It’s about navigating the future, your future It’s about learning to become a man who’s real, and able to love Are you waiting for me? Are your hands down in the dirt? We belong together I’ve been longing since my birth To be arms around you To be true to who we are To let all our pain out To be playing in your heart So let’s talk about the first stage of life The departure, when your boat is pushed out on the river Most of who you are is still your small self The you your family has made you, your schooling and your friends You’ve still not found your deep self, your Great Self, 'cos that’s what the journey’s for So you set out, full of hope, but with a heavy load All the baggage of your upbringing All the love, yes, but the fuckedupness too Maybe the absent father, or the smothering mother, or the cold indifference of those around you It’s no wonder you’ve a rough ride coming It’s gonna get tough and it’s got to So you can find yourself So you can become, a real man And that’s when you hit the second stage of life The initiation in the rapids and the storms That’s when you find the pain of brokenheartedness Love affairs that fail, failures in career and all your hopes for what the world might have been Plenty young men founder grazed on such jagged rocks as these Bruised and angry in a storm of violence towards self and others But it doesn’t have to stay like that No, my friends, not if you push on and open to the inner grace that will bring you courage The courage to face reality as it is, without lies The courage to know your wound but to outgrow it, and insist on beauty The courage to open your heart, to hold fast to truth, and to stand each step in dignity And that’s the courage that brings your boat to the third stage of life To see how your small self is held in a greater Self And that you’re fit to be an elder in your community, able to share the gifts and the blessings Able to support and inspire what gives life among your people And to love your beloved, to love and be loved by the Beloved no less, my friends Because we’re talking here of love in all its meanings And you can only love with a deepening heart And that is why you had to grow courage on this journey to the ocean That’s what your battle wounds on the field of life were all about That, my dear friends, is what qualifies you to be a man in your community Capable of loving and able to be loved... Capable of loving and able to be loved... Capable of loving and able to be loved