Baby’s first step
and baby’s first word.
Firsts are growth.
First day of school
First fist fight
Sweet 16’s first kiss.
Firsts make us wiser.
Firsts are milestones,
Firsts don’t stop
at 30 or 40 or 60 or 99.
What firsts have you had this year?
What firsts have you had this month?
What firsts have you had today?
Seek out firsts
Put yourself into new experiences,
Those new experiences will beget
When an unassuming poet
is invited by an artist
she met on Cape Cod
to come to the Southwest
for the first time,
she says “yes.”
Four months later,
she walks out of the Tucson airport
to see her first saguaro cactus,
well postured and plump
with Tai Chi arms,
she stops and bursts
“those cacti are real?”
“I’ve only seen them in pictures
and cartoons. They seemed so made-up.”
Now, the saguaro
shows up in her poetry,
is a symbol of patience
But, the saguaro was just the beginning.
Next, our poet dances Tango for the first time
feeling the rush and anxiety of nearness to a stranger.
His subtle silent communication
telling her how to move.
His talking eyes,
his chest beginning to turn,
his leg brushing against her leg,
his splayed hand on her back,
the gentle push of his hand against her cupped hand.
She feels the music
and floats backward
around the dance floor
like a drift-boat in the river current.
She returns the next week to dance again.
Chamberlab at the Rialto
and our poet is enthralled
for the first of hearing
all original music performed
by the composers themselves.
Yes, by brilliant musicians
teaming up to play their music
and share it with a privileged
theater full sitting just yards away
pouring the fun, murky, lively,
umpa-pa, sousaphoned, big brassed,
straight into our ears and hearts.
The following night,
poet witnesses her first burlesque show.
The dancers’ abundant bodies
gyrating to the saucy music.
Playing dress-up and dress-off.
Slowly, enticingly losing their frilly
fringed, feather, gloved, glittered,
Enjoying their own sexy.
Feeling unashamed, feeling powerful.
Swaying their pendulous breasts
and shimmying their lilting asses.
The poet buys a hugging dress with snaps
all the way down the side
and long gloves that crawl
up past the elbow
and a black tasseled garter.
These, she believes, will lead to
It has been a week now
since our poet has gaped at her first saguaro.
Tonight she performs at her first gallery opening.
a poetry reading surrounded by vibrant art.
What other life-boosting firsts
are coming her way?
Say “yes” my friends
Say “yes” to more firsts.