Earning Your Beans

My father always said, when we were teens...
As we gave thanks before our daily bread...
“What have you done today to earn your beans?”

We all ate well, as father had the means.
Our table never lacked an ample spread,
Yet father always said when we were teens,

“My sons, see how we fare... like kings and queens...
While most go poorly housed and clothed and fed.
What have you done today to earn your beans?”

“Tell me some act of yours that contravenes
Some human hurt with kindness in its stead,”
My father always said when we were teens.

He never let us turn our eyes from scenes
Of suff’ring, pain, or dread. “This day,” he said,
“What have you done this day to earn your beans?”

I pray my sons evince the grandsire genes
And tell them as we take our daily bread,
What father always said when we were teens,
“What have you done today to earn your beans?”