They Are

Ten years old,

bushy-haired and bright,

full of endless fluidity 

from her years of practiced dance

 

A little butterball of seven

with an angel's face,

a devil's sharp tongue,

and a troublesome demeanor

 

Nearly four now,

words like "aspergers" seem

meaningless as he displays behaviors

well above his years

 

Horrible threes a have

never been so real

and swear words have

never sounded so adorable

 

At two, the smallest and the smartest

speaks like his brother

and plots like his 

trickster of a cousin

 

The faces of my sister's children

are more than just

pictures in my wallet

or seconds on my Snapchat story

 

They are the sliver of light

when everything else seems dark

They are the giggles

through the tears

 

They are the frustrated tears 

over reading homework

and the accomplished tears

when they've said all the words right

 

They are everything I wasn't

and everything I still aspire to be

 

 

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