Beautiful 18

And suddenly, Alice is 18. This one has an easy smile and a generous heart with others, comes to a laugh quickly and sees beauty where others will miss it. But don’t mistake this quality with others for easiness with herself. Within her churns an ocean of feeling, with waves that might come in tidy sets or roll in with the power and unpredictably of a tempest. In both cases, the shore is never quite the same.

Happy Birthday to my wild beautiful unpredictable and above all, strong (stronger than she realizes) Alice.

What My Child Learns of the Sea

What my child learns of the sea
Of the summer thunder
Of the bewildering riddle that hides at the vortex of spring
She will learn in my twilight
And childlike
Revise every autumn

What my child learns
As her winters fall out of time
Ripened in my own body
To enter her eyes with first light

This is why
More than blood,
Or the milk I have given
One day a strange girl will step
To the back of a mirror
Cutting my ropes
Of sea and thunder and sun.
Of the way she will taste her autumns-
Toast-brittle, or warmer than sleep
And the words she will use for winter
I stand already condemned.

– Audre Lorde

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