"Close From the Start"
This one is for Laura Terry (technically, my ex-sister-in-law for 15 years and more, but we're all still quite fond of each other after all these years.  If nothing else, we do all happen to be  loyal folks in my family).  The portrait's of Ashley (my parents' first grandchild). Of course, Ashley's mother, her grandmother (my mother), and her older sister are all (in a family filled with completely unremarkable looking men) particularly beautiful, blonde women.  Ashley, who's now 20-something, also got all the good female genes, it seems.

I'll be sending this, with great & continued fondness, to my sister-in-law, Laura Terry.

the only song to go with this is, of course, Carrie Newcomer's very beautiful "For Amelia at Almost Thirteen"

go to:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oP23CqlT-QQ

We've been so close together
Close from the start
And as you learn to walk away
Take care of your heart
And don't forget your prayers
And whatever you do
Whoever, wherever you are
I'll love you

You're all crushes and blushes
and brushes with insight
But you still sleep with your bears
Half of the nights
But when you're ready and willing?
and you're of the right mind?....
The right teachers come along
Most of the time

You were born in the morning
In the quiet place
You were born in the morning
to take my place
We've been so close together
Close from the start
and Damn the first man
Who comes to break your heart

You're all long legs and long hair
And big wide eyes
With a hundred million questions
And a thousand hundred whys
And I wish I had the answers
But the best that I can give
Is to be a safe place for you
As long as I live

Cause sometimes as a grown up
My strength is all sapped,
And I'd give anything to sit in my own mother's lap
But she's long gone and long missed
And the best that I can do?....
Is the love that she would have given to me?....
I'll give to you

As far as I can tell
As far as I have seen
You couldn't pay me enough
to go back to thirteen.
But young girls do find out
And get wise to the rules
And young women do stand up
And, honey?.... so will you


You were born in the morning
In the quiet place
You were born in the morning
to take my place
We've been so close together
Close from the start
and Damn the first man
Who comes to break your heart