December 10, 2015

What is a Man? {Poem}


What is a man? Is he polished shoes?

Is he stoic silence? The pretense of invulnerability.

Is a man distant? Is he aloof?

Is a man sexual conquest? Is he intimacy?


Does a man walk with his shoulders back?

His head high?

His clothes tailored?

Are his eyes set upon a dream?


Does a man fight with purpose?

Is there a purpose in fighting?

Does a man have purpose?

Without a fight?


Does he lord his body over women?

Does he strap a pistol to his hip to protect himself or possess himself?

Without violence, is he a man?

Is a man a savior? Is he bold enough to be saved?


Can a man make room at the table? Or must he sit at its head?

Must a man rage? Must he occupy the world?

Does a man listen?

Does he hear?


Does a man close borders? Or make them porous?

Is a man vengeance? Is he the oppressor?

Can a man change what he was?

Will he still be a man?


What are a man’s rules?

Can he be any shade of skin?

Can he have his dignity back?

Or will we always hold his pigment in contempt?

Does a man forsake himself when he loses his place in the world?

Can he dig his hands into the earth and remember he is a man?

Can he find compassion?

Can he forsake wrath?


Can he return to his mother?

His father?

His lover?

And find his worth.





What is an Awakening Man?

5 Things I’ve Learned About Conscious Manhood.



Author: Mathis Kennington

Editor: Renée Picard

Image: Betty Vance (via the author) 

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Mathis Kennington

Mathis Kennington is a couples therapist in Austin, TX. He teaches couple and family therapy at St. Edward’s University and is the author of many blogs that most people haven’t read. To connect with Mathis, visit his website, Twitter, or Facebook.