An old man going a lone highway,
Came at evening cold and grey,
To a chasm vast and deep and wide,
Thru which was flowing a sullen tide.
The old man crossed in the twilight dim;
The sullen stream had no fears for him;
But he turned when safe on the other side
And built a bridge to span the tide.
"Old man" said a fellow pilgrim near,
"You're wasting strength by building here.
Your journey will end at close of day,
You nevermore must pass this way.
You have crossed the chasm deep and wide,
Why build ye, at your eventide?"
The builder lifted his old grey head:
"Friend, in the path I've come," he said,
There followeth after me today
A youth whose feet must pass this way.
This chasm that has been but naught to me,
To that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be.
He too will cross in his twilight dim,
Good friend, I'm building the bridge for him."
That old verse by Will Allen Dromgoole sums up what fatherhood is about.
It covers a whole lot of other things in the grand scheme of life also, but the best application of it is within the context of family.
P.S: hat-tip and many, MANY thanks to the Bean family for use of the photo.