105 Ways to Give a Book

TeenReader Birthday Poem

I searched online for an appropriate poem on the birthday of my special teen, but couldn’t find one. The old-fashioned poems were too stiff, the modern ones too steeped in dark irony, and the clever ones too frivolous. Should I write something that celebrates her amazing qualities? Her intelligence and wit. Her kindness and compassion. Her charm and beauty. Can I craft something that sums up how proud I am — not only of her achievements, but of the person that she is right now? Wise, sensitive and insightful beyond her years. Would I be able to capture our relationship? Its range from giggles to commiseration, funny comments and long conversations, inside jokes and special moments.

Nope, apparently not.

So, for Poetry Friday — hosted today at The Drift Record — I’ll share instead a bit from the book that we read on birthdays. The book that makes me teary every single time I read it: On the Day You Were Born, by Debra Frasier:
On the day you were born
the round planet Earth turned
toward your morning sky,
whirling past darkness,
spinning the night into light...

On the day you were born
the earth turned, the moon pulled, the sun flared,
And then, with a push
you slipped out of the dark quiet,
where suddenly you could hear
a circle of people singing
with voices familiar and clear.

“Welcome to the spinning world,” the people sang
as they washed your new tiny hands.
“Welcome to the green earth,” the people sang,
as they wrapped your wet, slippery body.

And as they held you close,
they whispered into your open, curving ear,
“We are so glad you’ve come!”
Happy Birthday to my angel.

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5 comments:

The Pen and Ink Blog said...

Oh! How beautiful! I love it. I am going to copy it and send it to my sons. Happy birthday to a wonderful glorious human who has a beautiful relationship with her mother. Live in Joy!

Mary Lee said...

It's so hard to find just the right words.

But you did it!

Happy Birth Day to YOU (and TeenReader's dad), too! Congratulations on this marvelous creation you started all those years ago, and who is now blooming so nicely!!!

Ruth McNally Barshaw said...

I love this!!! Because the description fits my third daughter perfectly. She's brilliant, kind, wise, creative, a leader. And her birthday is May 20, the day you posted this. She turned 14 today.
Happy Birthday to your angel and Happy Birthday to mine. :))
Lucky us.

tanita davis said...

Oh, wow -- I usually suck at finding birthday cards, but this is lovely. As Mary Lee says, you and Papa Book are to be celebrated as well, for being People Of Awesome (kind of like being People of the Book, only even better) and getting this kid started on her journey to amazingness.

Andromeda Jazmon said...

Oh, Happy Birthday to all of you!! God has blessed you with such a lovely daughter, and that wonderful knack for finding the right poem to celebrate her.