Tuesday, March 2, 2010

What Every Parent Should Know and Every Kid Remembers

I read this poem this morning in Garrison Keillor's Writers' Almanac on-line.

The world would be a different place if we realized the ministry of small things, right down to the shared Milk Duds. I loved this piece.

Un Bel Di

by Gerald Locklin

Because my daughter's eighth-grade teachers
Are having what is called an "in-service day,"
Which means, in fact, an out-of-service day,

She is spending this Friday home with me,
So I get up in time to take us,
On this summery day in March,
For a light lunch at a legendary café

Near the Yacht Marina.

Then we feed some ducks before catching
The cheap early-bird showing of
My Cousin Vinny, at which we share a
Dessert of a box of Milk Duds large
Enough to last us the entire show.

Afterwards we drive to a shoe-store to
Get her the Birkenstocks she's been coveting,

But they're out of her size in green; we leave
An order and stop for dinner at Norm Calvin's
Texas-style hole-in-the-wall barbeque rib factory.

When we get home I am smart enough
To downplay to my wife what a good day
We have had on our own. Later, saying
Goodnight to my little girl,

Already much taller than her mother,
I say, "days like today are the favorite
Days of my life," and she knows

It is true.

"Un Bel Di" by Gerald Locklin, from Gerald Locklin: New and Selected Poems. © World Parade Books, 2008 . Reprinted with permission. (buy now)

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