Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Birthday(s)

Traditional English birthday greeting

Is that a birthday? 'tis, alas! too clear;
'Tis but the funeral of the former year.
~Alexander Pope, To Mrs. M. B, line 9.

“With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.” 
― William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

“I grabbed a pile of dust, and holding it up, foolishly asked for as many birthdays as the grains of dust, I forgot to ask that they be years of youth. ” 
― Ovid, Metamorphoses

Midweek Motif ~ Birthday(s)

It is either your birthday 
or your un-birthday.  
And someone else's as well.

Your Challenge:  Write a new poem giving yourself or someone else a birthday gift on a specific birthday.  

(Or remember one already given/received.)

by: Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

My heart is like a singing bird
    Whose nest is in a water'd shoot;
    My heart is like an apple-tree
    Whose boughs are bent with thick-set fruit;
    My heart is like a rainbow shell
    That paddles in a halcyon sea;
    My heart is gladder than all these,
    Because my love is come to me.
    Raise me a daïs of silk and down;
    Hang it with vair and purple dyes;
    Carve it in doves and pomegranates,
    And peacocks with a hundred eyes;
    Work it in gold and silver grapes,
    In leaves and silver fleurs-de-lys;
    Because the birthday of my life
    Is come, my love is come to me.
The Author Reflects on His 35th Birthday

Related Poem Content Details

35? I have been looking forward 
To you for many years now 
So much so that 
I feel you and I are old 
Friends and so on this day, 35 
I propose a toast to 
Me and You 
35? From this day on 
I swear before the bountiful 
Osiris that 
If I ever 
Try to bring out the 
Best in folks again I 
Want somebody to take me 
Outside and kick me up and 
Down the sidewalk or 
Sit me in a corner with a 
Funnel on my head 
. . . .
Read the rest HERE

Related Poem Content Details

The black kitten cries at her bowl 
meek meek and the gray one glowers 
from the windowsill. My hand on the can 
to serve them. First day of spring. 
Yesterday I drove my little mother for hours 
through wet snow. Her eightieth birthday. 
What she wanted was that ride with me— 
shopping, gossiping, mulling old grievances, 
1930, 1958, 1970. 
How cruel the world has been to her, 
how uncanny she’s survived it. 
In her bag, a birthday card 
from “my Nemesis,” signed Sincerely 
with love—“Why is she doing this to me?” 
she demands, “She hates me.” 
she loves you” is and isn’t what Mother 
wants to hear, maybe after sixty years 
the connection might as well be love. 
Might well be love, I don’t say— 
I won’t spoil her birthday, 
my implacable mother.
. . . . 
Read the Rest HERE.

For K.R. On Her Sixtieth Birthday 

by Richard Wilbur

Blow out the candles of your cake.
They will not leave you in the dark,
Who round with grace this dusky arc
Of the grand tour which souls must take.

You who have sounded William Blake,
And the still pool, to Plato's mark,
Blow out the candles of your cake.
They will not leave you in the dark.

Yet, for your friends' benighted sake,
Detain your upward-flying spark;
Get us that wish, though like the lark
You whet your wings till dawn shall break:
Blow out the candles of your cake. 


Please share your new poem with Mr. Linky below and visit others 
in the spirit of the community.

(Next week Susan's Midweek Motif will be ~ Compromise )


  1. Happy Birthday Susan - have a wonderful day! (apologies we are the party crasher best avoided this week) but still 🎈🍰 to you

  2. Happy Birthday, Susan!! Thanks for spending your birthday with us. Wish I could provide the cake.

    1. Thanks, Mary. I am happy to be spending most of the day here. Later, I'll head to center city to get my bus pass, then to see/hear the film "The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble" and dinner with friends. Quite a satisfactory day, full of pleasurable encounters.

    2. The film sounds especially wonderful, Susan! I love Yo Yo Ma!

    3. Sounds like a wonderful day, Susan!

    4. Splendid music and musicians, and also good questions for all creative people to ask! Then had a mushroom dish at a great little vegan Chinese restaurant .. and now--I'm happy to be alone. Thank you for your wishes, Sherry and Mary!

  3. have a wonderful and happy birthday Susan :)

  4. Happy birthday, Susan! May you be blessed with good health, much prosperity and mas y mas (more and more) love!

  5. Happy Birthday Mary!

    Thank you for the birthday cheer
    birthdays’ come but once a year
    glad I spent it with you here
    in my heart I hold you dear.

    On PU I have no cares
    always glad to see you there
    writing lots of poems to share
    an international affair.

    This is my birthday poem for today. I wrote another for CP that is about birthdays but not directly. You will see. Getting ready to link it soon.

    I hope everyone has a good week and thanks to everyone for being so kind as to read my interview. I'm a little late reading but am getting to it this week.

    Love, Bekkie

    1. (It is Susan's birthday...but easy to make the mistake. Smiles.)

  6. I'm heading out for a while, but I'll be back this evening to read more--that's in a little over 6 hours. I'm loving my day and hope you are enjoying yours as well.

  7. Have a wonderful day, Susan. It sounds like an excellent one!!

  8. A very Happy Birthday Susan!!! Hope your wishes come true.

  9. Have a great day ahead, Susan. Many more happy returns! Thanks for the interesting prompt. :)

  10. Hey everyone--Jae and Rall and Buddah, Bekkie and Leslie and Panchali--and my partners at PU--thank you so much for the birthday greetings! This has been the best birthday ever. I rode 6 buses without paying a cent. Viva 65 (now tat I am getting stronger)! I'm glad you are enjoying the prompt as well. Some of your poems raise the metaphysical questions that only living can answer.

    1. No bus charges - the world is your oyster ;) I am very glad you had a good birthday - best wishes still


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