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Real Men Don't Cry

Updated on August 9, 2013
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When I watched that beloved movie, and Old Yeller died,

My little shoulders hunched, and I cried and I cried,

But of course I was just a boy, no more than a wog,

That old classic is still so good,

But now I am stoic, as strong as wood,

And after all...he was only a dog!

Now I am a Man, harder than nails and colder than ice,

You'll see no tears on this face,

A sympathetic nod will suffice,

Because whining is for weaklings and sissy's,

The only ones bawling should be the missy's,

When my little girl was born,

The nurse said, "Oh, how sweet, he's crying."

But I scoffed at that silliness,

Because I had yawned and was only sighing,

And then came the day, during my Father's funeral,

I held strong against the women's cries,

And the whole time, that damned dust kept getting in my eyes,

Last year I lost my little sister, the pain almost too much to bear,

I walked from under the tent and raised my face,

You see, it's the rain...there is no tear,

Now with only months to heal, Mother has been taken away,

Weeping daughters and sisters gather around her bed,

I hug them and comfort them, best that I can,

And pull my cap low, so my eyes can't be read,

I'm a Man you see, and big boys don't cry,

I hold my head high, with a stiff upper lip,

And my hard stern eyes will always remain dry,

This morning I woke, and at my feet, my old dog had died in his sleep,

I said farewell and buried him away, but I stayed strong while my wife did weep,

I said I needed to go out and take a walk, so I made my way outside,

And tho overcast and gloomy, I put on my shades, my eyes I would have to hide,

So I walked with hunched shoulders, in a tear misted fog,

Because after all, he was only a dog!



Jesus Wept -John 11:35

Old Yeller

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    • James-wolve profile image

      Tijani Achamlal 4 years ago from Morocco

      Your tears come easy, when you're young, and beginning the world. Your tears come easy, when you're old, and leaving it.But remember to cry is to release all sorts of ugly little pressures and tensions. Like waking out of a long, dark dream to a sunfilled day.I was like you so cold and impenetrable.I thought crying helps only women to get their own way,just as swearing helps men,Until the day when I fell crying on the floor wetting my pants over a friend who died in the sea in front of my eyes.He wasn't only a friend but more than a brother ..You really brings tears in my eyes..even if It is a dog,it is a life taken,my friend.I voted up.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      James: thank you so much for your heart felt comment, and I am sorry for your loss. I actually wrote this because of the image of men seeming weak if they cry. Considering what I have endured in the last year, I will admit that I have shed a well of tears...and I am not ashamed!

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 4 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Old Yeller always brings tears to my eyes, and so does Elvis Presley's "Old Shep":

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2ctN4WZt9Y

      Good work, Wayne!

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      Such a great peice... and you have every right to cry after the year you have been dealt... its not a sign of weakness, its a sign of human feelings and a sign that you care... Hoping you cry only tears of happiness this year!! Voted up

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Tears came to my eyes just reading this. My emotions have always been very near the surface, and though it still makes me uncomfortable and mars my gruff exterior, tears have always come too easily,

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thanks, Will, and I appreciate that Elvis blast from the past. Good thing there wasn't a video attached to it because I kept getting something in my damned eyes!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you sweety! We have shed our share of tears this last year. And when I see those you and the grand-kids again I'm sure there will be plenty of welling up!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      I'm with you, X. Sometimes I feel like such a hard ass, but it doesn't take much to melt this heart of mine.

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      I can't wait = )

    • profile image

      Ruth Lanham 4 years ago

      Beautiful and emotional. Thumbs up from me.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile image

      Live To Write 4 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Real men Do cry... and this poem is beautiful, and what wonderful and inspirational examples you use to illustrate that point...

      Voted wayyy up!!!!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Wayne, I cried for two years after my favorite cat died. She's buried in a garden I built around her. It's ok to cry. It's normal, natural and is an expression of emotion just as is laughter to something funny.

      The fact that you allow yourself to cry makes you a human. Someone of personal strength, who is secure in himself and not afraid of judgement.

      Personally, I love a man who's not afraid to cry!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Ruth: Thank you for the kind words and the support.

      Laurenzo: Thank you very, very much my friend

      bravewarrior: I'm having a hard time responding to your comment...because I've got something in my damned eyes again! Thank you much, darlin'

    • embarrett91 profile image

      Erika 4 years ago

      Good poem, Dad. This reminded me of a conversation I had once with Parris when he was telling me how he never feels the urge to cry, not since he was a kid and his dad passed away. But I am a woman and I cry even over commercials with cute babies in them LOL. I loved this though you showed very good writing. I voted up!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, sweety!

    • wildove5 profile image

      wildove5 4 years ago from Cumberland, R.I.

      Tears cleanse the soul, even a mans! Great poem! voted up!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      wildove; Thank you for the visit and the support!

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 4 years ago from TEXAS

      Wayne, this is such a truly expressive account of the emotions which cause tears to flow as well as the manufactured emotions which try to prevent them - because those are emotions of sorts,- of pride and desire to keep a strong 'front'. There are probably some situations in which it is best to keep 'cool', such as when others' confidence may be at stake, and someone must be stronger for their sake.

      But expressing via the release of tears is so beneficial in many ways. Expressing all genuine emotions is nature's way of keeping the balance in our systems. It releases tensions and clears out blockages which build to damage our vital systems. It even helps cure 'dry eye'! It allows one to feel free and whole. Bottling up grief, sadness, being touched and caring is very hard on the innards. Tears are the natural remedy.

      You expressed what must be a stressful battle between the expectation that being a guy, one must not succumb to feelings and his need to feel and be able to simply express it naturally. You obviously know how to handle it without shame or apology.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up. You said it well. If it must be that men must hide their emotions then so be it I on the other hand find it easier to cry.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for this. I cry also. Plus, as an orator, for the masons, I had the ability to make others cry too.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      O, my. Crying is for everyone, after all, isn't it? Fabulous, awesome, and all of the other words that describe 'well done.'

      So many times the stereotype of men has been 'real men don't cry.' Perhaps we should change it..to "REAL MEN DO CRY."

      To express our heartfelt love and tenderness through shedding a tear is more or less an ultimate tribute to a loved one's passing, be he or she our beloved human or beloved pet.

      Voting up up and away +++++

      Angels are on the way to you today :)

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, Nellieanna. I do know of those particular guys who say they never cry. To me it doesn't make them seem tough...it makes them appear pathetic!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      You are correct, Gypsy. By holding in your emotions, you are only hurting yourself!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Good morning, Martin. Thanks for the comment and I will say that a man who is not ashamed to express his emotions is stronger for it!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Patricia. We can all use a few angels wings wrapped around us from time to time!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      Happy St. Patrick's day Sir Wayne and I take a pill for my depression and a pill for my anxiety (along with my blood pressure pill) because I was crying too much and now the plumbing has dried up and I can't even cry at all - how ironic - I can't even cry at movies or music anymore.

      Although I cried at this . Oh Wayne how could you do this to a grown man ? lol

      Lovely lovely lovely - did I just say three 'lovelys' ...... well then , how about a fourth one for good meaure, lovely!!!!

      lake erie time 7:55pm

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Colin. and a hearty Happy St. Patrick's day to you as well.

    • Playdivadi profile image

      Diane Denison 4 years ago from Cincinnati

      Wayne this was moving and I am happy to know Men cry too. I think in many ways Men are more sensitive then women realize.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Diane. Thank you and I agree, men can be just as sensitive, they just try to hide it whereas women do not.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 4 years ago from West By God

      Wayne what a heart wrenching story. I don't know why boys are taught to show or hide their emotions. I am sorry for your losses. Emotions are good no matter how they come out. They release the pain and sorrow so that we can move on. Tears wash the soul.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Lady!

    • dghbrh profile image

      deergha 4 years ago from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!!

      Lovely yet so tragic and deep with reality here......though I was trying to find those words but the read here is most worth.....Shared all across and voted up interesting.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Very beautiful, look forward to reading more.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Deergha: I thank you so much for your kind words and your support.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Jackie...thanks for the visit!

    • MrsBrownsParlour profile image

      Lurana Brown 4 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

      Who wouldn't want to cry at all of those scenes? They touch on peak human experiences. I love the focal point of Old Yeller and the dog. Losing a pet has been one of the saddest experiences of my life. Last summer it was my cat of 13 years---she died in my arms. When another young, beloved cat got hit by a car, I was so full of grief that I prayed for a miracle (and I love your inclusion of one of my own favorite Bible verses---*perfect* counterpoint).

      Strength comes from truth and courage and determination, not from stoicism. Suppressing a feeling does not heal it, and only healing allows for growth.

      I like your poetic portrayal of this all-too-common stereotype of men; you draw in your reader with bravado, tenderness, and a sense of humor.

      ~Lurana @MrsBrownsParlour

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, Lurana. I appreciate your kind words and your support.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

      wayne,

      Real men don't cry, but is okay if I do? Oh my goodness. I had to take a deep breath between each line. This would have been beautiful without the personal sentiment, but you made this so personal I could hear a tear drop.

      Voted up and beautiful!

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, Cat (thats what I used to call my sister, Cathy). I appreciate your wonderful compliment and support.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

      Wayne,

      Truth be told Catherine (Cathy) is my name and would you believe that I have a brother named Wayne (oh and my daddy)?

      Thank you for expressing yourself through such beautiful words; it really is a talent and therapy for the soul... yours and your readers. :-)

    • GinaBina4 profile image

      Gina 4 years ago from West Tennessee

      This is so very beautiful and heartfelt. Voted up & beautiful!

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Wayne.. how wonderful is this hub.. when men i cry and I feel so close to them.. I feel like they are really human.. Jesus cried.. what is wrong with crying.. it is so wrong to make men feel like they cant cry or they are not really men.

      bless you for writing this

      I am sharing

      Debbie

    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 4 years ago from Georgia

      This is so beautiful and such a courageous expression of true emotion. Personally, I think it's ridiculous, the rules society imposes on both men and women. It starts at a very early age, doesn't it? A little boy in my family kissed me on the cheek, then on the lips, and everyone went WHOA! and the look on his face was heartbreaking to me, because it let me know that he thought he had done something unacceptable. Well, he was two, so it wasn't inappropriate at all. He was expressing something. We really do a lot of damage to one another, for no good reason. I applaud you for writing this. Voted up and beautiful.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      please - feel free to cry here - without excuse - or dust! there must be dust where i sit as well - or wait - i am simply crying!

      For you, your family, your lost loved ones, and OF COURSE - for your dog!

      for how f***ing unfair life can be!

      if this ALL happened within one year - not only do you deserve to cry - you deserve to stand on a mountain top and scream WHY???

      i am sending you all the good clean karma i can muster - and wish you a brighter, more peaceful future!

      i so wish i could help

    • izettl profile image

      Laura Irwin 4 years ago from The Great Northwest

      Great hub. Kind of like the circle of life, but I know this all too well. I've lost so many in my young years. Not just men, but as women we often try to suck it up. I know I did years ago, but after my kids were born it's harder for some reason. I'll just blame it on hormones. lol. In reality, it's hard not to cry every time they do. Anyway, love this poem. Voted up!

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Gina:

      Deborah:

      Crystal:

      Thank you Beautiful Ladies so much for your kind words and your support. You lighten up my Hubpage with your visit!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Leslie:

      izettl:

      I so appreciate you wonderful souls visiting my humble hub and leaving me with your beautiful compliments and support. I thank you from the bottom of my heart!

    • CloudExplorer profile image

      Mike Pugh 4 years ago from New York City

      My tear ducts are dry as hell from staring at these darn computer screens all day, and I have some odd Chalazion due to it all, and so I try to cry as much as possible to help correct it :)

      All jokes aside I love the way you threw both sides of the male rigidness into this poem, it goes to show how rough we have it, and have been conditioned to be by our dads if we had one growing up.

      Now to cry when mans best friend dies is definitely one worth crying for indeed. Awesome poem Wayne, thumbs up and outta here, and thanks to Debbies new FB group I located this sweet poem of yours.

    • LaThing profile image

      LaThing 4 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Well, the tears did come.... Reading this beautiful, touching poem of yours. But who cares, I am a woman.... I am allowed to cry! Thanks for sharing..... Voting up and awesome!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Mike, thank you very much for the support and the kind words.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, La Thing.

    • infinitejester profile image

      John Kinney 4 years ago

      Voted Awesome!

      What a wonderful poem!

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, John.

    • Getitwrite profile image

      Hilse Jacobsen 4 years ago from Maine

      I so appreciated this poem today. On my way to pick up my aging dog at the vet. Only those of us who have been fiercely attached to our canines know how hard it is to lose one of the best friends we've ever had. I think it's time for me to write a poem about my other dog--the one I lost last May. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Getitwrite. I appreciate the visit.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      You reminded me of my three-legged childhood dog, Brownie, growing up. He came to us at a very young age, and I believe he adopted us as his family and he lived throughout our whole childhood. I wrote an Ode about him. So, you made me cry tears for him. Real men cry tears, if they are real men! I am so thrilled you have joined HubPages. Your writing is so very refreshing, just what we needed around here!!!

      Voted up ++++ and sharing

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Sorry that I made you cry Faith, but I take it as a compliment. Real men do cry. Me and both of my brothers stayed in the room when they took my sister off of life support, and believe me...there was a lot of weeping going on. And I am not ashamed of it!

    • blondey profile image

      Rosemary Amrhein 4 years ago from Boston, MA

      What an awesome poem, loved it!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much Blondey!

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      Vincent Moore 4 years ago

      To cry or weep aloud is a sign of strength never weakness. I defy any man's man to deny another his tears. I have been the tough guy all of my life and tears I rarely shed. I left them in the shed behind beatings, I left them under beds hidden, whilst watching my dear mother get beaten, I wept when my dog was strangled for barking too much by a wicked uncle. I promised never to shed tears when I grew to be a man.

      Well my friend, this poet weeps at a given notice, over a sad and stirring flick, over memories past, over the inhumanity to mankind, men, women and children, over our earth being depleted, our governments crushing its citizens under rule of iron fists and greed.

      Yes indeed let any many deny another man's tears shed and in my opinion that man is not one, he is but an empty shell of a man, insensitive and angry. I was that boy, teen but never as a man. This poet weeps.

    • blondey profile image

      Rosemary Amrhein 4 years ago from Boston, MA

      Yes indeed, I think it's great for a man to acknowledge his emotions, it's really a gift to be able to see and to feel that softer side. I agree.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      "This poet weeps" amen, Vincent!

      They say, what doesn't kill us makes us stronger...maybe so, but it'll damn sure make us more sensitive as well.

      Thank you again for the visit and for the sincerest compliment!

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