Mindful Living Relationships Wednesday Wisdom

A stranger passes by

A stranger passes by - Wednesday Wisdom series

The poem “A Stranger Passes By” is such a poignant example of how we are sometimes guilty of taking our loved ones for granted and skip showing them the courtesy they deserve.

I remember, more than a decade ago, my son asking me why we are always so particular about saying “sorry” or “thank you” to strangers when we are out but at home, we just take our family members or even friends for granted. Mom brings a cup of coffee, we take it, enjoy it. Friend does us a favor, we’re happy. Sure we smile and maybe even hug, but we do not always say the words. Thank you. Or sorry, when we are.

It is not as if we don’t feel grateful or sorry. It is just that we are so busy rushing around or are preoccupied with our own selves or work that we just don’t pause to think. We simply forget that some of the things we expect of them – they are not obliged to do them. Right?

So when I read this poem titled “A stranger passes by” I wanted to share it. Enjoy it. And perhaps, pause to contemplate – how often have you been guilty of not being courteous with those who love you, and those whom you love.

A stranger passes by

I ran into a stranger as he passed by.
“Oh, excuse me please” was my reply.

He said, “Please, excuse me too,
Wasn’t even watching for you.”

We were very polite, this stranger and I.
We went on our way and we said good-bye.

But at home a different story is told,
How we treat our loved ones, young and old.

Later that day, cooking the evening meal,
My daughter stood beside me very still.

When I turned, I nearly knocked her down.
“Move out of the way,” I said with a frown.

She walked away, her little heart broken
at how harshly I had spoken.

While I lay awake in bed,
A divine voice came to me and said,

“While dealing with a stranger, common courtesy you use,
But the children you love, you seem to abuse.

Look on the kitchen floor,
You’ll find some flowers there by the door.

Those are the flowers she brought for you.
She picked them herself, pink, yellow and blue.

She stood quietly not to spoil the surprise,
And you never saw the tears in her eyes.

“By this time, I felt very small,
and now my tears began to fall.

I quietly went and knelt by her bed;
“Wake up, little girl, wake up,” I said.

“Are these the flowers you picked for me?”
She smiled, “I found ’em, out by the tree.

I picked ’em, because they’re pretty like you.
I knew you’d like ’em, especially the blue.

I said, “Daughter, I’m sorry for the way I acted today;
I shouldn’t have yelled at you that way.”

She said, “Oh, Mom, that’s okay.
I love you anyway.”

I said, “Daughter, I love you too,
And I do like the flowers, especially the blue.”

Vidya Sury gratitude

Did you like the poem?

The next time a stranger passes by you, and you show them kindness, do remember to do the same for your loved ones.

Relationships are precious, but they will last only if we treat our loved ones with the same respect and courtesy we show others – or what we expect from others. All of us enjoy feeling valued and appreciated for what we do and it makes sense to do as you would be done by.

A Stranger Passes By. Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom

Wednesday Wisdom is a series with short bursts of easy-to-consume wisdom in the form of inspiring stories, verse, quotes, anecdotes, reflections, easy meditation, thought-provoking questions and humor.

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9 Comments

  • Reply
    Lynne Huysamen
    December 19, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    Wow Vidya… I know what you mean by this. There are so many times I have been too sharp with my children and I am trying so hard to be more loving and patient. This was actually a goal of mine for 2019 and your post has been a reminder of this. I am so grateful to say that I have succeeded with my goal and made some really big changes.
    Lynne Huysamen recently posted…End Of Year Anxiety and Stress 2019- Intensified By Addiction, Trauma & Miscarriage

  • Reply
    Shilpa Garg
    December 19, 2019 at 7:12 pm

    True, we are so polite and courteous to strangers but are almost rude to our loved ones. We not only take them for granted but we have super low tolerance for their mistakes, though we do feel tremendous guilt later on. This is such a beautiful poem and a great reminder. Thanks for sharing, Vidya!
    Shilpa Garg recently posted…5 Best International Places To Celebrate New Year’s Eve

  • Reply
    Karmen
    December 20, 2019 at 2:25 am

    Ah, so true…. We are always so polite and thankful to every single person we meet. And when it comes to the people that are always around us, it’s like we always assume they know we are thankful and sorry. And this is so wrong… We need to show them we appreciate them.

  • Reply
    Ashh Akanksha
    December 20, 2019 at 3:02 am

    Beautiful Poem Vidya and yes we all are guilty of taking our loved ones for granted and showing those manners and etiquettes outside in front of strangers.This post is a great reminder to work on our mistakes.
    Ashh Akanksha recently posted…Very Last-minute Gifts & Stocking Stuffers

  • Reply
    Rajlakshmi
    December 20, 2019 at 9:52 am

    Awww this is such a touching poem. The words truly spoke to me. Indeed our closed ones see the worst of our nature and outburts sometimes. We should be mindful of how we treat them. Words can hurt and remain engraved in their mind for a longbtime .
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…Musings under a dystopian sun

  • Reply
    Birgit
    December 20, 2019 at 6:32 pm

    This is a heartfelt story and brought to mind something similar when I was young. I made something for my mom and stood quietly beside her so she would be surprised but she almost ran over me in the kitchen and told me the same thing..I was in the way. I walked away and sat in the living room and within 5 minutes she came to me, hugged me and apologized. She told me why she was short but that it was no excuse and that I was special and she wiped my tears away. I showed her the picture I drew and she loved it, of course. We do forget..often but we can always make it up. My hubby and I always make sure to say these simple but profound words.

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      December 21, 2019 at 11:33 am

      What a sweet memory, Birgit! I’ve had instances like that, and even though I felt a little bad at the time, the important thing to remember was that my mom always instantly came back and hugged me. Sending you lots of love! You are wonderful.

  • Reply
    Damyanti Biswas
    December 20, 2019 at 10:29 pm

    Very well written Vidya!
    Damyanti Biswas recently posted…What Small Good Thing have You Seen in this Big, Dark World?

  • Reply
    barbara briscoe
    December 22, 2019 at 1:58 am

    Greetings!,,,Thanks ever so much for bringing forth peace, joy and love my way…each and everyday!!!

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