Birthday Lights

By Calef Brown Calef Brown
Light bulbs on a birthday cake.
What a difference that would make!
     Plug it in and make a wish,
     then relax and flip a switch!
No more smoke
      or waxy mess
      to bother any birthday guests.
But Grampa says, “it’s not the same!
      Where’s the magic?
       Where’s the flame?
To get your wish without a doubt,
You need to blow some candles out!”

Calef Brown, "Birthday Lights" from Flamingos on the roof: poems and paintings. Copyright © 2006 by Calef Brown. Reprinted by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Source: Flamingos on the roof: poems and paintings (Houghton Mifflin, 2006)

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Poet Calef Brown

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

Subjects Living, Birth & Birthdays

Occasions Birthdays


Illustrator and children’s book author Calef Brown studied at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. He is the author and illustrator of Polkabats and Octopus Slacks: 14 Stories (1998), a collection of story poems that won the Marion Vannett Ridgeway Award for Poetry; Dutch Sneakers and Fleakeepers: 14 More Stories (2000), a Parents’ Choice Recommended Winner; Tippintown: A Guided Tour (2003); Flamingoes on . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Birth & Birthdays

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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