The Leader

For my oldest sister Shelley’s wedding, I was puzzled about the idea behind wedding gift registries. It seemed too impersonal for me. So after talking with my Aunt Janet, the talented artist of the family, she convinced me to make a gift of my words.

Below is a poem about Shelley, the new bride and the oldest of three sisters. I framed it beside a photo of us together on her wedding day. Though it lacked the seal of Williams-Sonoma and Pottery Barn, the poem included everything I had hoped to give her – a dedication to her impact in my life.

I chose to share this sentiment now in the passage below – I hope it serves as a window into my world growing up behind two special women.


The Leader 

They were three young sisters – women of a special kind,

who laughed about peculiar things that others wouldn’t mind.

The one they deemed the leader was born to be this way,

since her beauty and heart shone brightest each day. 

The middle was a comic – she made their bellies ache

and always in hysterics, they never got a break.

Though the youngest cried in rivers – she felt happiest with three,

safe in knowing that together they could venture far and free.

And golden years passed by them because that is how youth’s spent,

never knowing when they’re growing or where all the long days went. 

But one day the leader felt it time to leave the nest

So she packed her things and ventured out beyond the great Midwest. 

How the three of them would always have each other far and wide,

though to distant lands she traveled, in her heart they stayed beside. 

And the younger two would follow in her path already paved,

by the leader in her whole new life, a world she first had braved.