Monday, February 18, 2013

Monday Poetry Stretch - Celebrations

My son was 12 on Saturday. It was a happy occasion, but these milestones make me sad when I reflect on how quickly he's growing up.

I've written him a poem every year on his birthday, though I've never read or given them to him. I'm saving them for some time in the future. I suppose I've always wanted someone to write me poems on my birthday, and that's why I write for him. Or perhaps I do it just because I'm a sentimental sap!

What do you do to celebrate birthdays an other special occasions. Do you write poems? Do you have a celebratory poem to share? What kind of poem would you like to receive on your birthday? Leave me a note about your poem and I'll share the results in time for Poetry Friday.


  1. I decided, in some fit of insanity, to create a book for my husband for our 10th anniversary. My plan was to have photographs from each year and a poem about something significant for each year. It started strong then faltered. With the help of my Northern Virginia Writing Project writing group I finally finished it and gave it to him for our 14th anniversary! Better late than never...

  2. I actually used to write the odd poem and leave it in a bottle in the kitchen - literal messages in a bottle. I haven't done that in ages, but there are random bottles around the house with rolled poems in them still.

    I think young Will is lucky, and I'm sort of gobsmacked that he somehow got so old! I swear he was just eight and his biggest worry was his hamster. Thank you for sharing him with us through the years, and many happy returns of today for him - and you.

  3. I have been writing a poem a day since January 2011, which means celebrating many milestones including my birthday (3 times) and others who are close to me. Also other milestones--anniversaries, yahrzeits, deaths, falling in and out of like, etc.

    I find writing such poems energizing and, occasionally, I will send the poem to the person being celebrated.


  4. I write a poem for my partner throughout the year and she has a book which every now and then I will add a little something. Some poems I have written for her but have used for other purposes. To write poetry is a far easier way for me to describe the emotion inside to the intensity that I need to.

  5. I have been known to write a Christmas poem and send it out to friends and family in lieu of a card. It's sporadic, though!

    Mom and Dad wage a constant verbal battle
    With credit collectors that call our apartment
    With the precision of a watch maker. I know
    Not even to ask for a birthday present.
    Classmates make fun of my tattered shirts,
    outgrown jeans, worn out sneakers, I ignore
    Them best I can though some of those
    arrows do find their intended marks every
    Once and a while. However, on the anniversary
    Of my arrival on earth I wake up to find a long
    Sleeve top knit shirt, pants that look like
    my actual size and shiny white kicks. New clothes
    For a new me. Mom and Dad come in and say
    "Happy Birthday!" I don't know what I like more,
    the new wardrobe or the hug they both give me.

    (C) Charles Waters 2013 all rights reserved.

  7. My mom wrote a poem for me for Christmas one year. It's framed. It's about living out my dreams as a writer. I love it.

  8. I recently found a wonderful poignant poem by John Godfrey Saxe, penned sometime in the 1800s, titled 'I'm Growing Old' that I think is perfect to read on birthdays :). You can find it here:

  9. Happy Birthday! Here's a poem I wrote way-back-when for my little boy...


    I changed his diapers,
    washed his sheets,
    combed his silky hair.
    held him in my arms at night,
    rocked him in my chair.
    told him stories,
    sang him songs
    never left his side.
    If I’d my way
    this distant time…
    he’d be my sand,
    I’d be his tide.

    (c) jgk, 2001

  10. I hardly ever write poems for birthdays or anything. Twice I've written poems for Randy on his birthday or our anniversary for something. He's super supportive in almost every way, but his reaction to the poems was pretty subdued (I'm not sure he ever even noticed the first one in the card several years ago, so when I did this again recently on our anniversary, I asked him if he got the poem). I am not good at writing poems to people--it tends to come out too straightforward, not poem-y enough. Maybe if I just write a poem about a person, I'd have better luck:>)

  11. Wow--Congrats, Everybody--Laura! J. Patrick! Kate! What an esteemed group!

  12. Your on might love the paperback WAITING TO SEE THE PRINCIPAL AND OTHER POEMS. He's the perfect age for it.

  13. Your son might love WAITING TO SEE THE PRINCIPAL AND OTHER POEMS. He's the perfect age for it.