Poetry Month Day 3: On Birthdays

should be marked
by cake and ice cream,
Instagram posts and Facebook wishes
Or texts, the kind with hearts
And balloons
And silly memes

this time
next time
every time

I’d settle
that fills the absence.

I draft and scribble out poems in my head:

a catalog of today’s distractions

our conversation in the sun today

the four times I cried
(frustration, grief, happiness, gratitude)

how I wonder if other people
get to talk to those
long-gone, or not-so-long-gone,
or if I am lucky
or just weird

how dumb it is to depend on words anyway –
the arrogance of insisting
life can always be willed
into poem.

Published by Lainie Levin

Mom of two, full-time teacher, wife, daughter, sister, friend, and holder of a very full plate

9 thoughts on “Poetry Month Day 3: On Birthdays

  1. This poem holds so many emotion-filled words that I do not know what words to say.

    This stanza is sooo powerful…
    this time
    next time
    every time

    I read yesterday’s poem today, and I can clearly see Jess is wrapped into your heart. Hugs.

  2. “…the arrogance of insisting
    life can always be willed
    into poem.”

    With the knowledge of yesterday’s poem, I understand this one. We are writers, it is indeed our arrogance and our penance, our hubris and yet also our therapeutic condolence. I feel these words are doing a little bit of that for you.

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