When we were wee…
I had braces above my knee;
Made mud pies for tea with Granddaddy;
Sang "chim-chim-cheree." 1
Learned to climb a tree;
Excelled at spelling bees;
Drank gallons of iced tea.
Swam at the “Y” from one until three;
Helped my great grandpa shell peas;
Twirled baton; rode a bicycle effortlessly.
Two brothers were born; then there were three;
Jumped on a pogo-stick, laughing with glee;
Played piano, sang songs in true harmony.
Published a weekly newspaper for all to see;
Gave bike rides to my baby sister, so care-free;
Dreamed of exotic lands across the sea.
No longer wee…
Uphill walks in San Francisco injured my knee;
Baked pies and cakes to accompany the ritual of tea;
Learned what it is to be truly free.
Rock-climbed steep cliffs, higher than any tree;
Adopted the habit of drinking hot English tea;
Realised what matters; the heart holds the key.
Wrote words and missives for everyone to see;
Fought for human rights; for speech to remain free;
Gave birth to a daughter, a great joy for me!
Sent her far off to college, seeking her degree;
Lived and traveled in lands across the sea;
Struggled with foreign languages, until a fait accompli!
Married a wondrous spirit who whispered complicitly:
“Grow old along with me; the best is yet to be.” 2
Et maintenant, ca suffit! 3
1 Song from the musical Mary Poppins
2 Line from Robert Browning's poem Rabbi Ben Ezra, 1864
3 French meaning "And now, it is enough!"