Even when I was younger, I found Heinz Erhardt very interesting. His playful, light way of putting everyday situations in a new light through rhymes made me want more. When I recently discovered a book with his best works at my girlfriend's house, I couldn't help but browse through it a bit. When I then read through a few poems, one in particular caught my eye. This poem read as follows.
With this poem, Heinz Erhardt wants to convey a healthy way of dealing with worries and pain. Erhardt advises his fictional friend to stay away from worry and to consider pain as something minor. To illustrate this message, the poem uses the image of lambs in the pasture, unworried before their end at the slaughterhouse.
In the first sentence asks the friend to avoid any worries and to disregard all kinds of pain, or not to take it for all too important. This can be understood as a call for serenity and emphasis on positive thoughts.
In the second sentence, the image of lambs in the pasture is used. The lambs are carefree and happy, but the poem reminds us that they will eventually be slaughtered. This image could be metaphorical for the transience of life and the inevitable finality. It implies that the lambs are happy as long as they do not realize their mortality, similar to how people might be happier if they do not think too much about their own problems and fears. However, for someone who does not deal with how to cultivate his mind, this is a very strenuous and difficult undertaking. In this article about a Confucius' Simon explains how we can better manage our anxiety and stress by living a simpler life. Another article that can be helpful here is this onein which I explain why it is important to face your fears.
In the last sentence, the friend is asked if he cannot see how foolish it would be if the lambs were not joyful until after they were slaughtered. Because once you are dead, it is impossible to be happy.
So the whole trick is to enjoy life while it is being lived and not after the fact. It is important to be happy while you are in.
In summary, the poem seems to emphasize the idea that it is wiser to avoid worry and pain, or rather to focus on the joyful in life, much like the carefree lambs in the pasture. It could be an encouragement to approach life with a certain light-heartedness and not to waste too much energy thinking excessively about negative aspects of life.
What do you mean? Do you see another message behind the poem?