Danny Taylor

Older Siblings

It’s strange to me how time changes things
Differences turn to common interests
Fights turn to laughter
And the younger brother gets older

I can remember watching them leave for school
On the corner, at the old neighborhood
I sobbed wishing I was a big kid, like them
Envious of the freedoms and privileges granted by age
Displaying red-faced tantrums for that extra hour they were allotted
To stay up, or stay out

It made me sad sometimes, staring out my bedroom window at night
Feeling as though they didn’t want me in their family
“Fine! ” I’d say, “If they don’t need me, then I don’t need them! ”
But I did, I really did

A new house fostered the same thoughts
We grew older, and grew apart
I cherished short-lived moments of peace and joy
Scattered in spaced out increments
Amongst fights and screams

It makes me smile to think about my older brother
“Take your brother with you” Mom or Dad used to say
I always thought of him as the hero, and me, his sidekick
Having him beat the boss at the last level of a videogame that I could not
Or watching him scare and threaten a neighborhood kid
Who punched me during a game of backyard football
I’d press my ear to the vent in my room, hoping to hear he and his friends in conversations
In the basement, talking about grown up things
Wishing I could be like him
But I was his kid brother
And the four years that separated us felt to me like 20

And god gave me a sister
One whose smile can brighten the darkest room
And whose laughter is so infectious, it spreads and fills family dinners
I close my eyes and see childhood games at our grandfather’s house,
Pretending to be…anything
Remembering the home video taken after I was born, in the hospital
Seeing her face light up when she looked at me, as if that smile said
“Hi Danny, I’m your big sister”
And how I hoped that even one small thing I did made her smile,
And the wave of joy I felt after she did

Now we’ve grown, in years and in mind
Finding closeness I never could have imagined

And time leads us down a winding path, yet as we walk
We stick together…
Dad used to tell us, when we grew up, we’d be best friends
He was right

Poem Submitted: Thursday, February 26, 2009
Poem Edited: Tuesday, April 28, 2009

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