Thursday, January 14, 2010

Wet Oatmeal Kisses

As I picked oatmeal off my pajamas this morning, I remembered a poem I heard for the first time years ago from the famous, Mrs. T. Brady. I didn't even have children at the time, yet it pierced my soul. To this day it still makes me cry every time I hear or read it. I especially need this today, as I have had a short fuse with my children, lately. The time goes so fast.

Wet Oatmeal Kisses

One of these days you'll explode
and shout to all the kids,
"Why don't you just grow up
and act your own age?"

And they will.

Or, "You guys get outside
and find something to do --
without hurting each other!
And don't slam the door!"

And they don't.

You'll straighten their bedrooms
until it's all neat and tidy,
toys displayed on the shelf,
hangers in the closet,
animals caged. You'll yell,
"Now I want it to stay this way!!"

And it will.

You will prepare a perfect dinner
with a salad that hasn't had all
the olives picked out.
And a cake with no finger traces in
the icing.
And you'll say,
"Now this is a meal for company."

And you will eat it alone.

You'll yell, "I want complete privacy
on the phone! No screaming, do you
hear me?"

And no one will answer.

No more plastic tablecloths stained.
No more dandelion bouquets.
No more iron-on patches.
No more wet, knotted shoelaces,
muddy boots or
Rubber bands for ponytails.

Imagine. A lipstick with a point.
No babysitters for New Year's Eve,
washing clothes only once a week.
No PTA meetings or silly school plays
where your child is a tree.
No carpools, blaring stereos or forgotten
lunch money.

No more presents made of library paste
and toothpicks. No wet oatmeal kisses.
No more tooth fairy, giggles in the dark,
scraped knees to kiss or sticky fingers to

Only a voice asking, "Why don't you grow up?"

And the silence echoes:

"I did."

Author unknown

1 comment:

  1. wow, that is a powerful poem! Makes us think twice about what we say to our little ones. Enjoy them, through the ugly time too. grumpy, mouthy moments are better than none.