Peter Pan, don’t peter out

It’s time you stopped being Peter Pan,
The boy who’s all potential,
With promise to be anyone
He chooses to grow up to be.

But all he sees is Captain Hook,
Adulting by escaping Time
That ticks inside a crocodile.
If growing up means running scared
And being a coward, hurting all,
It’s better to refuse to grow.

But that entails a hefty price:
To shun responsibility
And run away from kith and kin.
For if you stay, and stay a kid,
The same potential praised by all
Will stink pathetic, burdensome.
And while you may have self-esteem –
Though even that is doubtful now –
You’ll slowly lose your self-respect.
And, trust me, they are different things.

I know you’re scared to even try.
No matter what you do, you’ll fail
To rise to said potential,
And so you’re building Neverland
With made-up perils, nemeses,
Who sabotage your every try.
But know that even stories stink
If heroes are forever stuck.

Begin, instead, by aiming low.
Then lower that to lower still,
Until you know you’ll get it done.
Without complaint. Without excuse.
And then you do it yet again.
And then, again. And then, again.
And once you get the hang of that,
Go find the smallest daily chore
For which you can be counted on.
And once you do that smallest thing,
Go find the smallest next in line.
And then, again. And then, again.
Until you’re carrying all you can.

Of course, you’ll face the ticking croc.
Already, it has got your taste.
So, don’t get all hooked up with it.
You do your thing and let it rest.
Of course, it will not let you be.
Of course, it will come after you.
But why engage it, make it mad?
You do what you’re banked on to do.
So, when your final day does come,
You’ll be a man, a Peter Some.

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