Thursday, October 03, 2002


She's growling, like a little tiger. Not cutesy girly-girl whines, but deep feline growls, beginning deep in her voicebox, tremulous until she breaks into a big smile.

And tonight, as we watched the pilot episode of “The Amazing Race 3”’, Sage started crawling on the jigsaw puzzle alphabet map on the floor. Crawling, not creeping. As in on all fours. And not just trying to balance herself, but moving with startling speed all over the place. It was incredible. I’d set her at the corner, near the couch, and she’d zip all the way to the end with fierce concentration. Nikki said that she’d started earlier today and I just had to see it to believe it.

I never thought I’d be excited by something like this, but fatherhood really changes your perspective of things. And now, more than ever, my little girl’s every motion is fraught with significance; her every growl an intimation of words soon to come.

How much love can a heart bear before it bursts with sublime happiness?

I don’t know. I'm watching the tiger cub crawling on the floor.


growl, little one, growl
with every inch you conquer
on all fours
my young huntress
so fierce before your time
(soon you’ll earn your stripes)

growl, little one, growl
the floor is yours to take
first that
and then the sky
you raise your eyes to
(soon you’ll earn your stripes)

growl, little one, growl
I tremble as I watch
and wait
for the day the words in your throat
erupt in a jungle roar
(soon you’ll earn your stripes)

growl, little one, growl
(soon you’ll earn your stripes)


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