Friday, May 01, 2009

The wait for 8 is nearly over

Our house has been a twitter with preparations for this weekend's birthday celebration. Tess has chosen the theme of "Fancy Girls" for this year. She's crafted handmade invitations. I'm not sure what my role in this one will be...Beth will let me know, as usual.
Yesterday, at the breakfast table, we brainstormed words that rhymed with "eight". This morning I tried my hand at a little birthday verse...


for my daughter, Tess, on her eighth birthday...
(first photo taken one year ago, the second a few weeks ago)




The Weight of 8

by Kevin Cahill

When you were 7 you couldn't wait,
you hated the wait for birthday 8.
The kitchen calendar you marked the date -
did I say "hate"?... I exaggerate!
Impatient at the rate Time did frustrate
you. But remember, that was then
you were but a wispy thing of seven,
though truth be told, seven was heaven.
7 served us art upon an empty slate
taped to the walls the things you did create.
But 7 glides away on slippery skates,

and in its wake a trail of figure 8s.
No, you didn't hate the wait for 8,
but at your bed while I would relate
tales of clever maids and secret gates,
in your unsleepy eyes I'd spy the trait
of dreaminess, late at night, dreams of 8.
How great it would be to wake up 8,
how you'd grow so tall and straight,
how you'd find a cookie on your plate,
and how you'd get to stay up late.
Now you're 8, and life is great,
even better than when you were 7.
Imagine how you'll feel when you're 11!
But let go all haste, simply enjoy 8,
Let Fate run on. Here with you I'll wait

and learn to bear the weight of 8.

love,
Dad
5/1/09

2 Comments:

Blogger Dave said...

Kevin, my friend! I finally found your site. I tried once before, but was bushwacked by that bane of my existence, "user error." Seems the person operating the computer (me) became distracted during the search and ended up reading a doctoral dissertation comparing Steve Martin's impression of Einstein to a ball of string. Then I got hungry and had a banana with peanut butter on top, and when I got back in front of the computer I forgot who I was, let alone who you are, and invented a new way to circular breathe, only to discover that very little air can be made to pass through one's ears. And now I find myself writing to you at 2:47 AM on a Friday night / Saturday morning, after having seen a dynamite production of Frost Nixon at Portland Center Stage, where the guy playing Nixon was so Nixonian that if he were named Smithson he would be THE Smithsonian buy I'm getting ahead of myself or maybe I'm just rambling but I just had to drop a line to say hello and mention again how great it was to first hear you on the radio and then meet you at Powell's for a quick cuppa Joe before you hit the road and I kinda wondered if you found the freeway home using the directions I gave, sending you over the Fremont Bridge instead of back through downtown which is much easier if you don't miss any turns but a real pain if you do and now my run-on sentence is approaching Proustian (or is it proustian) proportions or maybe it's just Kerouacian or however you spell it but didn't you just love "On The Road" and anyway speaking of on the road and roadtrips I do still want to come and see the play even if it is a 6 hour drive which doesn't worry me too much because my wife and I have relatives with whom we can stay and did you ever find out for sure if Steve Martin is going to be there? Loved your poem for your daughter, by the way, and look forward to reading your posts from France when I get the chance. All the best to you and yours, David Boe

2:57 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

Dad, you've done it again- created a slip of paper that your daughter will cheris forever. It's just a different daughter this time.
Could you tell Tess that I didn't forget her birthday? I just found out that the gift I wanted to send can't be delivered to La Grande. Huge bummer, but I'm working on something else. Please give her my apologies and let her know that I wish her a happy 8th.
Can't wait to see the pictures of the Fancy Girl party!
Love, ♥Erin

11:14 AM  

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