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Against Prognostication by Jeffery Thomson

            Just like the American inspirational speaker and life coach, Iyanla Vanzant says, "Parents are teachers, guides, leaders, protectors and providers for their children". This affirmation is way more intricate than what it seems like. All the difficulties a parent can have are portrayed in the poem "Against Prognostication," by Jeffery Thomson, who depicts a father who is against prognosticating his son's future. One question that immediately arises is why is the speaker so determined to oppose prognostication? Though, after reading the first stanza, one can perceive he is in an inner struggle with his emotions when he emphasizes that he has "not yet" prognosticated his son's future. From this very small section it is possible to deduce that he is currently dwelling in uncertainty, he does not know if the solely action of thinking of his son's future is right or wrong. He fears to become a controlling parent, but even more, he fears to fail as a guide and as an advisor to his child. In the first seven stanzas he seems to be having very contradicting thoughts; giving up on his commitment of not prognosticating, "How he will read and reread/ the Audubon Field Guide and memorize each bird (which is a comprehensive guide to America's birds with their species, pictures, field descriptions and habitat information)"(Thomson 2-3). By giving a specific book's name, it shows he himself has a great passion for birds and he wishes his son to have it as well. This perhaps, was taught by his own parents and he wants it inherited in his descendant.
             Interestingly, not all of the experiences the speaker depicts are common and characteristic fantasies that parents usually have, like accomplishments and successful moments. For instance, in stanzas three and four he gives the impression of being perturbed with the thought of his son misbehaving and eventually suffering the consequences of his actions by mentioning him "returning home in a squad car" (Thomson 3-4).

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