It was in a small town long ago,
She was the youngest of four kids,
She couldn't catch up to the others,
No matter what she did.
They were older, bigger, smarter,
And they liked to pick on her,
In the family scheme of things,
She could do nothing but endure.
They never failed to let her know
They were the first to have arrived,
As if that gave them special rights,
How dare she be alive!
Her older sister got new dresses,
She got the hand-me-downs,
She felt like Cinderella,
No gold slippers nor gold gowns.
Sibling rivalry was strong,
Although then she didn't know it,
Was she jealous of the rest?
If so, she never meant to show it.
Poor baby - poor little sister,
Growing up was rough,
Even the family dog and cat,
Couldn't quite love her enough.
But, one sunny, summer afternoon,
She came into her own,
She won a contest at the drug store,
And she did it all alone.
She colored a Mickey Mouse picture,
And she stayed within the lines,
The nice man at the drug store said
Her artwork was just fine.
Then he put it with some others,
Into a great, big box,
And someone in a blindfold,
Reached in and pulled hers out.
The child was ecstatic,
She was thrilled down to her socks,
The little girl had won first prize,
The druggist put it on her wrist,
Which she held out with pride,
The only one of all the kids,
To come home with such a prize.
Whistles blew, and bells rang out!
Flags unfurled at the mast!
Cheers resounded everywhere!
Pure joy - unabashed!
The envy of the neighborhood,
Let alone her sis and brothers,
So pleased for her, the whole world was,
So proud, her dad and mother.
The watch looked grand upon her hand,
But her smile was even grander,
Could she have been too proud?
Who had the heart to reprimand her?
She couldn't have been happier,
Better than a birthday package,
Or a fancy Christmas box.
Now her brothers and her sister
Would have to give her more respect,
No longer insignificant,
She had been 'watch-bedecked.'
And not just any watch, my friend,
Oh no!  This one was gen-u-ine!
A real, authentic MICKEY MOUSE!
Truly - one of a kind!
Mickey's little white-gloved hands,
Moved slowly round its face,
At each tick-tock of the tiny clock,
His hands moved another space.
All in all, one happy child,
Who got more than just a watch,
But didn't really understand,
What else came with its box.
An important thing called 'self-esteem,'
And our little girl had gained some,
A picture book, some colored crayons,
And a special watch had made some.
Over the years, the watch disappeared,
As do most childhood things,
But never did the child forget,
Her first taste of self-esteem.
To learn it one must earn it,
It's not a flat-out gift,
Was only a sign of it!
Virginia (Ginny) Ellis
Copyright 2002

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