4.03.2006

Happy 17th Birthday George!




MIDDLE CHILD

She brought home the tomato plant in a paper cup,
rooted it among the tiger lilies.

Straight off the school bus, she tended it,
lavished it with rain and rhymes: potato, play-doh
and for the greedy blooms she knew to pinch—tornado.
The vine grew like mad, had to be staked, staked
again, then tied and caged.

By summer, the plant sagged
with the color of rage. She gathered the fruits
delicately into her shirt tail, lined them up
like quiet children on the window sills.

7 comments:

Anne-Davnes said...

I love that one, Tania. Being a middle child myself, I can recognize the behavior of other middle children by the way they take care of things. I think middle children mend things and create things - and they often do this on their own. So much hustle and bustle around them makes them focus and decide for themselves what they'll like and need.

George is beautiful.

Biggy said...

George, your mom cried like a big baby after she posted this. You should get a "I (heart)Mom" tattoo to ease her pain of losing you to your pending adulthood. BTW, that's the only tattoo I'll approve of.

Tania Rochelle said...

Whatever! I got coffee in my eye.

nolapoet said...

Hey, she's gorgeous (and looks just like you)! Happy Birthday and forget the pizza!

Robin

MCALDWELLC said...

Beautiful...both poem and daughter. By the way, how does one get coffee in her eye?

Collin said...

Ditto what Robin said. Happy Birthday, George.

Tania Rochelle said...

Thanks, y'all.

Anne, I wrote that when she was in third grade. She was the perfect, easy-going child, who once every six months or so had an earthshaking temper tantrum and then resumed her equilibrium quickly, as if it had never happened.

I have a couple of those episodes on video, of course, because I am a terrible mother...

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