Our parents fail us, and we in turn fail our children.
Take your eyes off the road for just a second, or focus too narrowly, and you fail.
We get behind the parenting wheel with directions we have written ourselves: avoid this pothole, don’t go down this road. And then we fail our children other ways, all unaware: casually or sadly or cruelly, though rarely with malice.
What we have done to them or failed to do is irrevocable and cannot be erased. When we realize what it is that we have or have not done, we see the bloody fingerprints everywhere, upon the babes in our arms to whoever they are now. But only to a degree: there are strange lights and shadows where our children (have) travel(led) that confound our gaze — valleys where they walked amidst enemies, looking for friends.