Yesterday Duncan turned 8 ("Well, I may be a year older, but I can still burp as well as yesterday: SOUNDEFFECCHHT!") and his card depicted an 8-shaped racetrack; Granddad's poem was the usual literary marvel full of enjambments and metaphysical turns. I won't post his poem here without permission, but it did remind me that when Daisy turned 8 she said some things about it that led to this poem. See what you think. The stanzas should be laid out in a figure of eight, with 4. at the "crossroads."
a continuous poem in eight stanzas
that “Eight is great!”
because of the rhyme.
But then I turned eight
and it IS great:
the shape, the sound, the place of eight,
8 the best snowman I ever built: a round circle on top
like my head, full of everything I know, balanced on a
round circle below like my body full of everything I can do.
three different ways to write the date;
that gardening is mostly wait;
what it means when animals mate.
roller-skate, and stay up late;
taste the soup I know I’ll hate;
slip the hook into the bait.
And 8 is made of
one long line that curves and turns
and crosses itself in the middle;
not too young and not too old
not too little and not too big.
Eight is great.
And here’s another thing about 8:
that one long line that curves and turns and keeps going
around and around—
a train on a track that never ends—
take that one long line and lay it down on its side and it means
8 lying down is the sign for
numbers counting themselves on and on
into the distance, a line of time that never ends.
So this is what I wish at night:
that I, lying down, am
8 to the power of infinity,
and waking up eight and great
every morning until time never ends.
ARR MATEY* 2008
Enjoy this week's panoply of poetic posts at TBWTSCT with Karen Edmisten!
*I'm amused by typing ARR instead of All Rights Reserved, and then I feel I have to finish it off piratically...