Thursday, October 3, 2019

We Need Good Fences

Robert Frost
In his poem Mending Wall, Robert Frost concluded with the famous line, "Good fences make good neighbors."   I agree with that line.  Fences help us feel safe.  So do doors and windows.  A fence keeps pets and children from running into the street.  Fences also keep strangers from approaching our home.  The same goes for doors and windows.  We don't want strangers having access to our homes nor do we want insects going in and out of our homes.  Fences, doors and windows are boundaries to help us feel safe.  We also need personal boundaries to help us be safe.  Personal boundaries are guidelines, rules or limits that we create for reasonable, safe and permissible behaviors for other people to act towards us and also how we will respond when someone passes those limits.  I must confess that if I run a red light the first thing I look at is not for moral outrage.  The first thing I look in is the rear view mirror to see if a cop is behind me.  Laws also help keep us safe.  Things must be able to bend a bit.  If the fence is too high and has no gate then no one can approach the house including those I want to approach.  If I keep the doors and windows locked at all times then no one can enter even those I want to see.  And if laws are too strict we feel frightened and no longer safe.   In life and in all things related it is important to give and take.  Being too rigid robs us of life's opportunities. In the words of Barbara Mandress, "We've got to give a little and take a little," in order to discover the wonders of life.