Sister, you were so tiny
when they brought you home
and we all fell in love.
Skin like milk
and toes like baby mice;
you made snuffly hedgehog noises
as you suckled at Mum’s breast.
We pretended to be elephants,
our arms as waving trunks,
and you exploded into giggles
and wide gummy grins.
Green mash snuck in on an aeroplane spoon,
smeared against your cheek
and in your ear
when you turned away.
You couldn’t play catch
or understand Monopoly,
but you could climb the silver birch
as though you had a tail.
Mum was furious when you ripped that dress.
You just wore your others
skateboarding, climbing, play-fighting –
and ripped or stained those too.
Mum put your bed in my room
and I lay watching you sleep –
you’d curl up like a cat
and leave your eyes three-quarters open.
When Mum bought bunks,
we stayed awake and chattered
until Dad crept up on us
and bellowed from the doorway.
Your friend came for a sleepover
and slept as a bright purple sausage
on the bedroom floor.
She told me you liked a boy in your class.
You became an ostrich
and I wondered when you’d grown older
and how I hadn’t noticed.
And now I’m leaving,
just as you become a ‘lady’
(who climbs trees, plays hockey and swears).
Just to let you know –
I’m going to be around to hug you
when you’re ‘too old for hugs’, kiss you
in front of your friends, and I’m never
going to stop calling you ‘Kid’.
For my li'l sis... who was very embarrassed by this poem, hehehe.. Isn't that what older sisters are for? Embarrassing their li'l siblings? ^_^
Bless your cotten sockies, you poetic maniacs. ^_^
Love - Lynne