Saturday, March 20, 2010

And That's the Way it Was

The first time my 7th grade English teacher wrote this poem on the board, we thought she'd lost her mind. No, she was just introducing me to my life long friend, Ogden Nash. I think this was the first poem I memorized without it being mandatory. When I went home and recited it, my little brother thought it was hysterical. Being 8 years younger than me, he was easily entertained.

And thus was born a family tradition of sorts. From time to time Bro would ask me to "tell him that thing again". I would and we'd both laugh. When I got married and moved away from home, each Spring I'd send him a postcard. No signature. Just the poem on the back. One year I forgot and he kept talking about the arrival of Spring. Kind of an odd subject for a kid in high school. Then I realized why. I never missed a year again.

Three years ago, he declared himself "too old" for this ritual and suggested I send the postcard to his son instead. I love my nephew, but it just wasn't the same...especially as I had to add a note for his 7 year old self, "Ask your Dad...he'll explain."

The only thing "Dad" couldn't explain is how he got too old for this poem....and I never have. Never will.

So here, on this the first day of Spring, I share with you a tribute to:
Childhood memories
A younger brother who got old
An older sister who still embraces her inner child
And a formal apology to Ogden Nash for what I did to this poem yesterday in my "Friday 55",

Spring is sprung.
The grass is riz.
I wonder where
the flowers iz?

The bird is on the wing.
Now isn't that absurd?
I always thought the wing
was on the bird.

Little Brother's Youth
may it R.I.P.

As for me?
I'm not ready to be a REAL adult yet.


Akelamalu said...

Oh I love that poem and I like what you did with it for you 55 too. :)

Susan at Stony River said...

Ogden Nash was brilliant; the octopus one is my favourite!

Did your brother ever find the dang photo yet?!

the broken down barman said...

i know the feeling about not being ready to be grown up yet......still feel like a wee schoolboy most of the time, and at 106 yrs old, i think its time i did start to mature....

savannah said...

it never ceases to amaze me when i remember how old i am! *snickering* i decided a long time ago, i would be officially old the moment right before i take my last breath, sugar! xoxoxox

Peggy said...


Now spring can begin for me, I needed Ogden to declare it so!
Have always loved this poem and Ogden is brilliant like susan says!
Our spring here is not so springy but it's coming!

Monkey Man said...

Traditions are traditions for a reason. Instead of asking you to leave one to start another, perhaps he should use this rutual with his son and continue the tradition with his own twist. Great story.

Anonymous said...

I so don't want to ever be grown up. But Alas. Very well done :)

steven said...

hey hope it's good to play with the established pieces. the little boy, the kid, the teenager. the young man - well is ee the world through all of them. i love that privilege!!!! sweet post! steven

hope said...

Thanks Akelamalu! Nash always makes me grin.

Susan...he is still in the dog house on that one. Swears he looked...nephew says he didn't. ;)

Barman, I'm guessing the first 125 years are the toughest...then we have to mature. :)

Amen savannah! That's a perk of working with senior citizens: they still think I'm a "baby"...even after I had a 50th birthday.

Peggy, hold'll be hot before we know it and we'll be begging for winter's cool charms.

Thom, the trick is in "you may have to grow old but you don't have to grow up!"

steven, as long as that inner kid of mine is kicking about, I'll be happy. :)

Larry said...

Not just the girls hope hell after I finish writing these I don't go outside till day light.
Thanks for being so reliable on visiting my blog and I appreciate your comments.


Zephyrs Revenge

Dan said...

Never heard of that poem before but have to say I liked it.

Can see why your younger brother loved it at that age.

Nice photo as well......

Brian Miller said...

nice does not get old...forever young.

Anonymous said...

I have tagged you for the Hershey's Better Basket Blog Hop HERE.

Ji said...

roses are in my blog,
waiting for you,
your question in the poem is answered,
Happy Monday!