“How old is your baby?”

I asked the young mother;

“Almost one-and-a-half”

she replied, “And this one—”

she indicated a toddler next to her

“Is almost three-and-a-half”

and I wondered when it was

that we stopped charting our ages

with halves and three quarters

tacked on.

I remember being fourteen-going-on-fifteen

and fifteen-going-on-sixteen,

and saying I would be twenty-one

in September, but after that,

I think –

if asked, I just replied

My actual age and as decades drifted by

It no longer was politically correct

for someone to ask

“How old are you?”

and I really don’t mind

being sixty eight (or going on seventy)

for with the age came children

and grandchildren

and perhaps

a little wisdom.

I am no longer “going on”

—just hoping to keep getting there!


Sandra Lee Smith

Written February 13,  2009

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