Being Sixteen

On my 45th birthday, I read poems that I wrote as a teenager. Here’s one I wrote about being sixteen:

I was given a present
When I turned sixteen
I can keep a year or two
Or maybe even three
Depending on how I do

And being sixteen
Is a lucky thing
I can whistle a tune
I can swim in a sunset
I can sleep on a cloud Morning or afternoon

But being sixteen
Only lasts one year or two
Or maybe even three
Depending on how I do

Thirty years from now
Who knows what I’ll be
Maybe forty, or just twenty-three

Will I swim in a sunset
Will I sleep in a cloud
And will I still know how to whistle this loud?

Will I always be sixteen
Or will it go away?
I want to be promised
This present will stay.

Or does it last only
A year or two
Or maybe even three – It depends on me.

* Photograph from high-school with boyfriend at the time, Alex.

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