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Wednesday
Apr082009

The Itsy-Bitsy-Spider.

I sang the only verse I know. Over and over and over again. If there are other verses, I may need to find them.

"The Itsy-Bitsy-Spider went up the water spout,
Down came the rain and washed the spider out,
Up came the sun and dried up all the rain,
And the Itsy-Bitsy-Spider went up the spout again"

At first, the soft singing does nothing. Violet just stares up at me with a quivery lip; the hair trigger is being caressed. Then, the moment all oxygen is vac'd from the room. And the dam gives out. Her tiny nostrils flare and collapse. That little face goes ruby. Eyes squish. My daughter's crying is somewhat akin to a 747 taking off. With sirens. Maybe a teradactyl State Trooper.

I keep the verse going though. On a steady loop...

"The Itsy-Bitsy-Spider went up the water spout,
Down came the rain and washed the spider out,
Up came the sun and dried up all the rain,
And the Itsy-Bitsy-Spider went up the spout again"

Careful not to waver my voice too much, I keep the volume the same: low-ish. Violet's stumpy limbs flail and kick and I can feel the super small fingers of right hand gripping my t-shirt. It's surprisingly tight for such a dainty fist. A few minutes go by and we are waltzing in a certain circle across the hardwood floor and back again. I know I am slumpy as I move cause I want to lean in and nibble her ear a little; I like the idea of playful maneuvers maybe relaxing her a bit. But I pull back time and again. She's too young for that shit yet... an ear nibble will just up the stakes.

Eventually, her eyes begin open a smidge and the gasps and gulps subside. She has a moment of clarity and out of nowhere stares into my face with shakey cheeks. The last of the tears rolls away, warm drips on my finger tips behind her neck. I smile down at her, keep the spider rolling.

It's working!!! OH HELL YEAH!

Her open eyes flutter, close, open, shut. I can see her watery eyeballs roll back into her eyelids. Then they pop open fast. But the verse is mystical and I am a snake charming medicine man with a itsy bitsy spider in my mouth. She is drifting. Off. To. Sleep.

I don't dare stop the verse. Ten minutes go by and my daughter is asleep in my arms while I move around the room same as before, the very short song continuing to be sung at the same volume, same timbre, everything the same same same.

I don't want to put her down. Finally.

Reader Comments (6)

<3
Congrats.

April 8, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Serge...go w. the entirety of Tom Waits 'RainDogs' the next time...Babies love them some Waits!...plus, it's kinda rhyme-y.

Try Tango til they're Sore to start...

Well you play that tarantella all the hounds will start to roar
The boys all go to hell and then the cubans hit the floor
They drive along the pipeline, they tango 'til they're sore
They take apart their nightmares and they leave them by the door
Let me fall out of the window with confetti in my hair
Deal out jacks or better on a blanket by the stairs
I'll tell you all my secrets, but I lie about my past
And send me off to bed for evermore

Make sure they play my theme song, I guess daisies will have to do
Just get me to new orleans and paint shadows on the pews
Turn the spit on that pig and kick the drum and let me down
Put my clarinet beneath your bed 'til I get back in town
Let me fall out of the window with confetti in my hair
Deal out jacks or better on a blanket by the stairs
I'll tell you all my secrets, but I lie about my past
So send me off to bed for evermore

Just make sure she's all in calico and the color of a doll
Wave the flag on cadillac day, and a skillet on the wall
Cut me a switch or hold your breath 'til the sun goes down
Write my name on the hood, send me off to another town, and just
And just let me fall out of the window with confetti in my hair
Deal out jacks or better on a blanket by the stairs
Tell you all my secrets, but I lie about my past
Will you send me off to bed for evermore

Fall out of the window with confetti in my hair
Deal out jacks or better on a blanket by the stairs
I'll tell you all my secrets, but I lie about my past
Send me off to bed for evermore, send me off to bed for evermore

Sweet success! There will be more.

April 8, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterColleen

Hang in there Serge ! You're a good dude, Monica's your girl, and you got a sweet little weeone. Things will work out - half the battle's wanting it. Make time for each other, in addition to Violet. Hope to see ya and the family soon.

April 8, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEric

I could never remember baby songs, so I just sang her songs I made up, or show tunes that wouldn't leave me. Oh, and when she was about two and used to wake up crying, I sang her "East".

We once made up an entire four verse song about tomatoes, which we sang at the top of our lungs in a car in Ireland, to our screaming four month old.

It goes too fast, I tell you. :-)

April 9, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEDW

hey there
i'm from germany and it's great to read your blog. i read your wife's blog and it's quite interessting to read your story now. i think your going to be a great dad.

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

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