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Happy Birthday, Beautiful!

Sunday, July 11, 2010




Who knew that a daughter could become a muse
Spurring aesthetic ecstasy
My own private model
Moving gracefully through meadow and still waters.




Though you are at an age most consider awkward
You don't catch a deer looking ungainly
and it is hard to find you other than lovely.


You are kind to the young and helpless
Beloved by toddlers--a good measure of character.





And you can put a turkey poult to sleep
With a gentle massage to its tiny skull.
Look, Mommy, he loves this.


Fearless, you vault into space
and cartwheel along
Your young bones limber
Your ankles still resilient.


I'd love to live in that willowy body
Just for a day. All right, a few hours.
To feel that spring, that lightness
That I once had and now fight to regain.


You are baking now, cookies and cakes and bars
Happily making just the things I must avoid.
I can't deny you the joy of creating, so we eat some and give the rest away.
The struggle goes on. But not for you.


You've too much sense to text while driving
Having fallen in and then out of love with your cellphone
Granting that privilege early worked fine
For you are a child of sense and sensibility.



Yes, you'll be driving only two years hence
And I will watch you disappear
Trusting your instincts and your reflexes
To bring you safely home again.



But I won't think about that now.
You're fourteen and beautiful
And I'll keep you here like a butterfly
Until it's time to let you go.


31 comments:

Dammit, woman! Tough old ex-cops aren't supposed to blubber like this.

crying....

Feebs is remarkable, and I'm so pleased to have met her. Something wonderful is going to (continue to) happen.

Ex-cop? Crackerbread, you continue to astonish me.

It's too good. I like it too much. Sniffle.

Ah...

Happy birthday Phoebe! Such a beautiful young woman...may you conquer the world.

Beautiful photos and commentary!

Posted by Anonymous July 11, 2010 at 11:36 AM

Miss Phoebe Linnea Thompson at 14: Beautiful, brainy, kind, graceful, self-possessed -- and baker of the world's most delectable butterscotch cookies. I can't wait to see what 15 looks like.

What a beautiful tribute. Sniff.

Posted by Anonymous July 11, 2010 at 12:23 PM

My lovely red-haired daughter is now double 14. So, I reflected some on her 14th birthday. I don't specifically recall it.
But, I do recall entirely the feeling of deep pride and love at the growing lovely young woman she was becoming.
It just gets better.
We should all be so fortunate--I wish you many more years of motherly pride. And I wish Phoebe the best birthday--until next year's and on into a long long life.

Julie, this was a great post. Tears and all, love it.
Jeanne

Posted by Anonymous July 11, 2010 at 2:04 PM

Happy Birthday,Phoebe!
Our Rachel is celebrating her 18th today, too.
You go, Girls.

I thought your tribute to a dove was wonderful... but this... well. . . .

Beautiful words for a beautiful girl!

Just beautiful!

Happy Birthday Phoebe:)

Your daughter is just lovely. It's so good to see how you and Bill treasure this time you have with your kids.

Joyful read. A Mother's love for her daughter brings a few tears.

BEAUTIFUL! :) my birthday too!!- 7/11/61

Happy Birthday, Phoebe ! You are a lovely young woman !

She looks like "The Girl With a Pearl Earring"!

The measure of a parent is how well their child turns out, so you have obviously been a wonderful parent.

Posted by Anonymous July 12, 2010 at 10:12 AM

You know of course that from here on out, the years will zoom by at double time.

I did not believe them when they told me that.
Well, ... it's true dammit.



I just sent my 14+7 baby girl back to college after a nice weekend home. We painted the house together, laughed, ate good food, watched a silly movie.
Every daughter age is good.

Happy birthday to a lovely young lady!

Poetry, grace, beauty. You are an artist in every way. She's like a gorgeous thoroughbred. She has such command of the world. What a gift you've given the word.

Come on, weren't we just yesterday sitting on a blanket under the willow tree reading books for all hours, playing Freddie Fish computer games, working 1000 piece unicorn puzzles, snuggling in the hammock...? I only know it can't have been yesterday because now my own long lean filly is due to turn 7 in just over two months. Happy Beautiful Birthday, Phoebe. Thank you for preparing me to be the mother I am today. I love you.

Happy Birthday, Phoebe! Although we've never met, I feel like I've know you forever. Such beauty and grace, such warmth and wisdom in such a young woman is astonishing. You've done an amazing job as a mother and friend, Julie. Enjoy the trip she will take you on.

This comment has been removed by the author.

Julie
my daughter Sophie just turned 22! Your words brought me back so vividly to 14. It really is a poignant age and the beautiful, phabulous Phoebe embodies it.

Too sweet. What is it about daughters?

Posted by Anonymous July 13, 2010 at 11:51 PM

sighs and kisses and birthday wishes to beautiful Phoebe and her beautiful mother.XXOOM.

Posted by Anonymous July 20, 2010 at 5:58 PM

Beautiful pictures and words.

Happy Birthday (quite a bit late), Phoebe!

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