Birthday Poems - Poems For Birthday - For A Thirteenth Birthday
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For A Thirteenth Birthday - Poem by Lisel Mueller
You have read War and Peace.
Now here is Sister Carrie,
not up to Tolstoy; still
it will second the real world:
predictable planes and levels,
pavement that holds you,
stairs that lift you,
ice that trips you,
nights that begin after sunset,
four lunar phases,
a finite house.
I give you Dreiser
although (or because)
I am no longer sure.
Lately I have been walking into glass doors.
Through the car windows, curbs disappear.
On the highway, wrong turnoffs become irresistible,
someone else is controlling the wheel.
Sleepless nights pile up like a police record;
all my friends are getting divorced.
Language, my old comrade, deserts me;
words are misused or forgotten,
consonants fight each other
between my upper and lower teeth.
I write "fiend" for "friend"
and "word" for "world",
remember comes out with an "m" missing.
I used to be able to find my way in the dark,
sure of the furniture,
but the town I lived in for years
has pulled up its streets in my absence,
disguised its buildings behind my back.
My neighbor at dinner glances
at his cuffs, his palms;
he has memorized certain phrases,
but does not speak my language.
Suddenly I am aware
no one at the table does.
And so I give you Dreiser,
his measure of certainty:
a table that's oak all the way through,
real and fragrant flowers,
skirts from sheep and silkworms,
no unknown fibers;
a language as plain as money,
a workable means of exchange;
a world whose very meanness is solid,
mud into mortar, and you are sure
of what will injure you.
I give you names like nails,
walls that withstand your pounding,
doors that are hard to open,
but once they are open, admit you
into rooms that breathe pure sun.
I give you trees that lose their leaves,
as you knew they would,
and then come green again.
I give you
fruit preceded by flowers,
Venus supreme in the sky,
the miracle of always
landing on your feet,
even though the earth
rotates on its axis.
Start out with that, at least.
Comments about For A Thirteenth Birthday by Lisel Mueller
Poems About Birthday
- 1. A Birthday Poem , Ted Kooser
- 2. A Birthday , Christina Georgina Rossetti
- 3. Poem On His Birthday , Dylan Thomas
- 4. Poem For My 43rd Birthday , Charles Bukowski
- 5. Ninetieth Birthday , Ronald Stuart Thomas
- 6. A Prayer For A Mother's Birthday , Henry Van Dyke
- 7. Birthday, Birthday, Happy Birthday , Udiah (witness to Yah)
- 8. Happy Birthday , Sylvia Chidi
- 9. A Birthday , Aleister Crowley
- 10. A Birthday Candle , Donald Justice
- 11. For K.R. On Her Sixtieth Birthday , Richard Wilbur
- 12. Ninon De Lenclos, On Her Last Birthday , Dorothy Parker
- 13. To The Memory Of Mrs. Lefroy Who Died De.. , Jane Austen
- 14. The Birthday Card , Ernestine Northover
- 15. - (Birthday Poem #5) To A Libra , Ronberge (anno primo)
- 16. Stella's Birthday March 13, 1727 , Jonathan Swift
- 17. - (Birthday Poem #4) For A Virgo , Ronberge (anno primo)
- 18. A Birthday Song. To S. G. , Sidney Lanier
- 19. Birthday , Robert William Service
- 20. - (Birthday Poem #1) For Someone .. , Ronberge (anno primo)
- 21. ! A Birthday Celebration , Michael Shepherd
- 22. - (Birthday Poem #3) For A Leo , Ronberge (anno primo)
- 23. For A Thirteenth Birthday , Lisel Mueller
- 24. (dodgy Dave Tale) Happy Birthday , JoJo Bean
- 25. A Ninth Birthday , Algernon Charles Swinburne
- 26. Birthday , Yevgeny Yevtushenko
- 27. On His Eightieth Birthday , Walter Savage Landor
- 28. A Strictly Not A Poem Birthday Greeting .. , Alison Cassidy
- 29. A Happy Birthday Sonnet For Jerry , Alison Cassidy
- 30. On My Birthday, July 21 , Matthew Prior
- 31. The Birthday Wall (Children) , C.J. Heck
- 32. The Celebration Of Jesus' Birthday , Helen Click Roberts
- 33. Birthday - Birthday Appreciation , Shashidhar Kumar
- 34. A Birthday Poem , john tiong chunghoo
- 35. Nursery Rhyme For A Twenty-First Birthday , Arthur Seymour John Tessimond
- 36. A Birthday Poem For Keppel , Alison Cassidy
- 37. A Limerick To Esther Leclerc On Her Birt.. , Chuck Audette
- 38. An Ode To Anna Russell, On Her Birthday , Chuck Audette
- 39. February 21 - Whose Birthday Today? , Michael Shepherd
- 40. A Birthday Gift , Robert Fuller Murray
- 41. Song Composed For Washington's Birthday , Henry Timrod
- 42. Happy Birthday Dad , Jim Milks
- 43. A Birthday Night Out , Alison Cassidy
- 44. Happy 10th Birthday Samia , Seema Chowdhury
- 45. Happy 37th Birthday Sunny , Seema Chowdhury
- 46. I Know She'Ll Be Alright (For Chelsey's .. , Mary Nagy
- 47. Birthday Wishes To A Physician , Lizelia Augusta Jenkins Moorer
- 48. Happy Birthday Dad , Arfa Karim
- 49. For My Sister On Her 16th Birthday , Charlie F. Kane
- 50. My Daughter On Her Thirtieth Birthday , Alison Cassidy
New Birthday Poems
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- Birthday?, RAJAT GHOSH
- Happy Birthday To Me..., Anamta Ali Pasha
- Happy Birthday To You!, Anahit Arustamyan
- Fresh Birth., Nikhil Parekh
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- carpe diem