You’re on your way,
To add to the Wattree Clan;
It’s my conviction, not hope, you will surely both,
Add a page to the sojourn of man.
You’ll be loved and nurtured to take your place,
In a world you do not yet belong,
But when we’re through, we trust both of you,
Will help make our people be strong.
You’ll be taught that knowledge is the key to life,
And to harvest its essence you’ll strive,
Then combine that knowledge with the wisdom of Solomon,
To help see our people survive.
Think not of what is politically correct,
Seek to be independent of thought,
For group-think, indeed, is not thought at all,
But that of which fools are wrought.
Embrace truth over all as your clarion call,
Make integrity your moral code,
And when life’s so tough you think it’s too much,
Allow God to relieve your load.
Make the God you trust the God of your heart,
And not the God of man,
For the God of man is man himself,
And only just when it suits his plan.
And look to the note that your poppy once wrote,
A withered vine ignored as benign;
Make my words come true, what I said of you,
Make my legacy whisper through time:
"Neither scholar nor the head of state,
The most common of men seems to be my fate;
A life blistered with struggle and constant need,
As my legacy to man I bequeath my seed.
More fertile, more sturdy, these ones than I,
This withered old vine left fallow and dry;
The nectar of their roots lie dormant still,
But through their fruit I’ll be revealed."
Eric L. Wattree
January 28, 1998