The first season
We are like seeds
Thrust into the dark, warm earth.
We have no energy or life of our own.
We are programmed
The product of our genetics,
Our heredity, and our environment.
We have no choice concerning our ancestors.
We do not pick our parents.
Nor do we choose where,
Or the conditions under which,
We are raised.
For nearly all of us
What happens in these first two,
Three, six and and even twelve years
Determines our beliefs, thoughts,
Emotions and actions
For all of our lives.

Ironically, the second season of our lives
Is the most important in terms of self-determination.
What we choose to do
How we spend our time
Between the ages of 13 and 30
Establishes for the most part
How we spend the balance of our lives
Doing what, with whom.
Best to be wise here
Rather than “old too soon, smart too late.”
Our seeds have grown in the daylight.

The third season
Is our productive season.
It is when the heritage and history of our first two seasons
Begin to produce and expand.
It is when the essence of what we are
Personally and professionally
Comes forth and exhibits itself to the world.

It is when the struggle for consistency,
For harmony, for focus, for balance, emerges
As the dance of notes between our genes,
Our environment, our parents, our peers,
Our significant other,
Our work and our play
Seeks the sound of symphony
The resonant chords that are uniquely us.
We here bear the fruit of our seeds and growth.
It is our “rush” of life
Our statement to the world
Which holds both the stamps of approval and affection.

The fourth season
Our final one
Is our harvest
When we reap what we have sown
When what has gone around comes around
When our lives are hopefully better, not bitter.
Our harvest years begin between 55 and 65
And last until we,
Like our forefathers before us,
Collapse back into the earth
Dust into dust
The linear progression of the cycle completed
Our legacy of memories and mementos remaining
And, God willing, the laying to rest of loving good seed.

© R.E. McMaster, Jr.
February 23, 1998