Friday, December 19, 2008


"There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval."
George Santayana (1863 - 1952), Soliloquies in England, 1922, "War Shrines"

So it's my birthday in 4 days; but since we have company coming, I probably will not have time write, or even think about writing. So, I've gone overboard today. It's just after two, I'm still in my p.j.'s, I haven't eaten lunch, and Shrek is playing for the second time in the background...yes, I'm horrible, I'm letting the t.v. babysit my son. I don't feel bad. He's fed, he's clean, and we've been out to play in the snow 3 times today. And he's had a nap.

So, I spent the mid-morning, while he was asleep, frantically dulling my virtual pencil. But, I had no idea it would pour forth from me in such droves. I guess we're having more than one kind of storm front here. Piles of snow brought piles of poems, as well.

While I was writing my yearly birthday poem (it's a wierd tradition, I know...but it's a way to evaluate where I've been, where I am, and where I'm going), I was listening to Feist, one of my favorite musical finds this year. This particular song struck me, not only because I love it and because it keeps my son occupied (he likes to dance to it), but because it speaks so specifically to my life, which I never noticed before.

I've come to the goal. Now I just get to revel in all of its beautiful simplicity.

Mushaboom - Feist

Helping the kids out of their coats
But wait the babies haven't been born oh
Unpacking the bags and setting up
And planting lilacs and buttercups oh

But in the meantime we've got it hard
Second floor living without a yard
It may be years until the day
My dreams will match up with my pay

Old dirt road,
(mushaboom, mushaboom)
knee deep snow
(mushaboom, mushaboom)
Watching the fire as we grow
(mushaboom, mushaboom)

I got a man to stick it out
And make a home from a rented house oh
And we'll collect the moments one by one
I guess that's how the future's done oh

How many acres, how much light
Tucked in the woods and out of sight
Talk to the neighbours and tip my cap
On a little road barely on the map

Old dirt road,
mushaboom, mushaboom)
knee deep snow
mushaboom, mushaboom)
Watching the fire as we grow,
mushaboom, mushaboom)
(mushaboom, mushaboom)
Old dirt road rambling rose
(mushaboom, mushaboom)
Watching the fire as we grow
(mushaboom, mushaboom)
Well I'm Sold...

Birthday poem, 2008

I have had a cold on my birthday every year since I was born.

I’ve never had a party on the actual day, because it’s bad timing.

I’m 32.

I’m married.

I have a son.

I have a cough, and a bit of a sniffle; but for the most part, I can breathe.

Tomorrow, my husband is taking me shopping for clothes

that don’t make me look like a mom,

or a teacher.

I’m 32.

I’m in debt, but I’m getting out, slowly.

I’m sitting on a comfortable, gray couch.

There’s a striped cat who sheds too much sleeping beside me.

She’s made my left thigh warm and furry.

It’s hypnotizing to watch her belly rise and fall.

I’m 32.

I teach middle school.

I hate to cook.

It’s one o’clock, and I’m considering a drink.

Part of me feels guilty about that, but another part says I’m on vacation so it doesn’t count.

Maybe a glass of red wine, or a hot toddy. I don’t even know how to make one of those.

I’m 32.

I don’t like to wear socks, unless it's really cold.

I keep chapstick in every drawer, in my car, in my purse.

The heater in my house is loud. It works better on the west side of the house.

The baby sleeps on the east side of the house, so we turn it up high enough to make us sweat at night,

to keep him warm.

I’m 32.

I don’t have cable.

I hate to exercise.

Tonight, we will probably stay in, since the roads are icy. We have family coming to stay for the holidays. There is laundry. And I should probably mop the floor so the dog prints aren’t so visible. My mother will notice that I haven’t dusted and that the cats leave prints on the stove top.

I’m 32.

I’m cautious.

I don’t like to drive.

I was born two days after solstice, two days before christmas.

I’m writing this on the 19th.

Always too early or too late to be on time.

I’m 32.

I live a simple life. I love my husband passionately. My son gives me new eyes.

I’m 32, and all I ask is one more day of the same.

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