Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Happy Birthday Laura!

Today is my little sister's birthday. She turns 26, a great age, in my opinion. I was thinking about what to write, and--as it so often does in our family--a little rhyme spilled out. (There are better and more sophisticated forms of poetry, but we're not a very sophisticated family, so this is the kind that comes most naturally to all of us. My apologies to the aesthetically sensitive.)

For Laura, with love. Thanks for changing my life 26 years ago, and every day since. Happy birthday!

My World, With Laura In It

The first years of my life 
Were an only-child treat
Yet somehow our family 
Didn't feel quite complete.

So I began asking for a sister,
Pleading year after year,
But until I was nine,
None did appear.

I wanted a sister to dress up like a doll
A best friend to teach about diaries
And take on shopping sprees to the mall.

And then she arrived, one night in November,
And everything changed, all I remember.

For all the sisterly dreams I had erected,
The actual sister was not quite as expected.

She took up space, took up my time.
The toys I outgrew were no longer mine.
She cried and fussed and filled diaper after diaper
(And whenever she'd soiled them the worst
Seemed to be when I had to wipe her).
She broke my things, then wet my bed.
Yes, having a sister was quite different instead.

It was different, yes, but
Though it took a while to unearth it
Having a sister was entirely worth it.

As a baby, she'd smile and look up at me
With eyes filled with wonder,
She'd laugh at my silly faces
And cling to me during thunder.

She'd hold onto my finger 
Because her hand was so tiny
And gradually she became
Markedly less whiny.

She grew and she grew
Getting more fun each year,
A daily joy
Though far or near.

We look nothing alike,
Not one single bit,
But even so,
We're as close as sisters get.

I call her all the time
And she even calls me back.
We have keen sister-sense,
A kind of psychic knack
For feeling what's up with the other
Or knowing when something's down,
For thinking the same crazy things
In our two very separate towns.

I both adore her and tease her,
But she gives as good as she gets,
And though I got a nine-year head start,
I'm no match for her wits.

She's someone charming and funny,
But simple and true.
She likes finding little happy things
And making them, too.

Now she's making another small, happy thing,
A new daughter (and niece!)
So as my baby sister turns again older and wiser
I'm wishing her new family a world full of peace.

I wish her a world of surprises
A world of motherly delight,
A world of sweet joys
And a future that shines bright.

It's the beautiful world I know,
Made more beautiful still,
By the sister I've loved from the start
And the hearts that she fills.

1 comment:

Laura said...

wow - that is some serious poetry! Very sweet. Love you lots - and thanks so much for wishing for's been grand! :-)