Robert Pinsky, poet laureate of the United States, recites poems with a father's day theme.
JIM LEHRER: Finally tonight, some poetry for Sunday, which is Father's Day, from NewsHour contributor Robert Pinsky, who is a father and the poet laureate of the United States.
ROBERT PINSKY, Poet Laureate: Here's a poem by Robert Hayden:
"Those Winter Sundays"
Sundays too my father got up early
And put his clothes on in the blueback cold,
then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather made
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.
I'd wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking.
When the rooms were warm, he'd call,
and slowly I would rise and dress,
fearing the chronic angers of that house,
Speaking indifferently to him,
who had driven out the cold
and polished my good shoes as well.
What did I know, what did I know
of love's austere and lonely offices?
ROBERT PINSKY: And here in the 17th century Richard Corbet to his son, Vincent Corbet:
What I shall leave thee none can
But all shall say I wish thee
I wish then, Vin, before all
Both bodily and ghostly health;
Nor too much wealth, nor wit
come to thee,
So much of either may undo
I wish thee learning, not for
Enough for to instruct and know
Not such as gentlemen require
To prate at the table or at fire.
I wish thee all thy mother's
Thy father's fortunes and his
I wish thee friends, and one at
Not to build on, but support,
To keep thee, not in doing many
Oppressions, but from suffering
I wish thee peace in all thy
Nor lazy nor contentious days;
And when thy soul and body
part, as innocent as now thou art.