Introducing the New Baby to His Sisters

for National Poetry Month
and in honor of J and S’s new baby

Make sure your arms are empty
when the big sisters arrive.
Just this once, let the baby languish
in the plastic bucket.
Put away the beatific image of
mother cuddling infant.
They don’t want to see that.
They want to run to their mother’s arms,
minding any tubes or hurts,
marveling at all the plastic bracelets.

Now it is time.

Set them down in a chair, show them
how to make a cradle with their arms.
Then give them their brother to hold.
Let the first glimpse be
in their arms, not yours.

Yes, the days will come
when they have to be patient,
when they are annoyed
at the fact of him.
But not today.
Today he is someone they must
shelter and love.
I promise,
with flesh of their flesh
laid across their dimply knees,
they will understand this.

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4 thoughts on “Introducing the New Baby to His Sisters

  1. Dot says:

    LOVE this!

  2. Shawn and I have again been talking about adopting. He has a concern about Hunter getting “too old” to want to be involved with a baby, but this poem eases my fears. So lovely.

  3. anne says:

    this is dear. thanks for sharing it. if i ever have a 2nd grand i’ll share it w/ the parents of the first grand for their thoughtful consideration.

  4. Thank you for this and I wish it had been at hand…sixty years ago. OK, time for me to LET GO of that one!

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