by Peter Wyllie At the back of the playroom, behind an old chair, If you peeped very quietly, you would have seen there An old bear called "Teddy", who spent every day Asleep, when the children were out of the way. He was old and quite shabby without any hair; So bald, that his nick name, to all, was "Fred Bear". But the children just loved him, to hold and to feel; They'd talk to him always, to them he was real. One day a new Sindy arrived on the scene; With a wardrobe of clothes to dress up like a queen. She turned up her nose at old Teddy, for she Was elegant, pretty and expensive you see. But, though she was pretty, she was hard to the touch; So it was that the children didn't cuddle her much. Despite her appearance, because of her feel, She was not like old Teddy, she just wasn't "real". One night, when the children had gone off to bed, She pulled up her chair and sat down next to Ted. "Please tell me", she asked him, "What is your appeal, And why do the children all think you are real?" "Well now" said old Teddy, in a most kindly way, "I'll tell you the truth if you don't run away. Being "real" can happen to one toy, or all; But it's rare that it happens to a bat or a ball." "It starts with a cuddle, goes on to a kiss. (That's one of the best bits that I'd really miss.) And then, if you're soft and you're warm to the touch, You'll know what it's like to be loved very much." "Some hard plastic toys simply fracture and break, For they are too brittle, this loving to take. And those with a motor, that go off with a roar, Quite often end up being smashed on the floor." "For a toy that is "real" can be thrown on the floor And then be picked up to be thrown down, once more. No hurt is too much, for he will not complain Though his hairs falling out and he's often in pain." "But when children are tired, it's him that they hold; It's him they will cuddle when they're feeling cold. And when they are ill it's to him they will go, He will comfort them, gently, whenever tears flow." "If they're lonely they need him, and he's always there To make them feel better, their sorrows to share. In sickness or health he will be at their side With a smile on his face, and his arms open wide." And Teddy was right, I'm sure you will agree. I have toys that I love, and I know they love me. There are others I like and they, sometimes, are fun; But they're hard' or they break when my play's just begun. But what about us, are we like those toys? Are we hard and sharp cornered, all bustle and noise? Do we break when we're pushed, are we cold to the touch So that those who need help do not come to us much? "Not for small children" our label might say, "I'm fragile and brittle, so please stay away. I'll bid you 'good-day' and I'll manage a smile; If you reach out to touch me, I'll just run a mile." Or are we like Teddy, with arms open wide, Prepared to be held very close to the side? Not a sigh, no complaining when we are let down; No hint of a grumble, no sign of a frown. Despite all our hurting, our sorrow and pain, We just go on loving, again and again. We know in the end it will all be worthwhile When we see all the sorrow dissolve in a smile! So let's be like Teddy who, though just a toy, Brought comfort and happiness, laughter and joy. And then in a world that is broken and grey Will come a bright light, like the dawn of the day.
The end