Thursday, August 18, 2011

To the young man who wrote my daughter a poem

by Maria Geraci

First off, I'm glad to say that my daughter doesn't read my blogs, so I feel pretty free to say whatever I please here without fear of the dreaded "Mom, you didn't write that, did you?" repercussion. That said, I can continue. I'm currently down in Orlando, getting my youngest daughter settled into her freshman year at the University of Central Florida (the nation's 2nd largest university with a student population of over 56,000!)

We've now made 3 trips to Target (latest figures have us at the 1,000 dollar mark), 2 trips to Bed, Bath and Beyond, a trip to Publix (to stock her up on her organic cereal) as well as a trip to the outlet mall to take advantage of tax free weekend to buy clothes. Both me and my credit cards are exhausted. Let me just tell you, boys are much cheaper and easier, so thank God I have one of those as well.

On day 2 of our moving in the dorm expedition, we took a break to eat lunch at Panera. It was an odd time of the day  (2pm) so the restaurant wasn't crowded, although it was pleasantly full. We got our food and sat at our table, when I noticed a young man (close to my daughter's age) check her out (we moms are eagle eye experts at this). He had a computer and some writing supplies in front of him, so I assumed he was probably a student. After a while I noticed he went back to his computer and writing so I didn't pay him anymore attention. My daughter and I finished lunch, and left the restaurant.

On our way outside to the car, this young man followed us outside and called out to my daughter,
"Miss!" My first thought was that we'd left something behind.

"I'm not a stalker or anything," he said (this is when I started getting a little nervous.)

"Um, okay, " my daughter said.

He then handed her a folded piece of paper with the words "to the girl with the black hair". "I wrote this for you. You'll never know my name, but I wanted to give this to you."

My daughter looked a little stunned, but she took the paper from him. We got inside the car and looked at one another. "I hope it's not porn," I thought.  My daughter opened the letter and read it to me as we drove back to her dorm. Shame on me. It was not porn. It was one of the loveliest love poems I've ever heard.

Now, maybe this guy sits at Panera all day long and gives different girls a similar version of this poem. Or maybe not. It was so specific to my daughter and to the events that were happening around us while we ate, that I have to think that he did indeed write it just for her (or else he's just really good at putting in spontaneous details). Regardless, my daughter was completely charmed (and so was I).

"Keep that," I told her. "You might never get anything like that again."

She smiled and tugged it away in her handbag. "I'm going to pin this to my bulletin board and when I'm having a really bad day, I'm going to read it."

Who said romance was dead?


  1. What a great experience! Something must be in the air - a man approached me in the grocery store last week to tell me I was beautiful - shook me up so much I almost forgot what I was there for. lol! So I understand the whole "is this guy a stalker" thing... but a poem? How lovely!

  2. What a fabulous moment and a great story, Maria!! I hope your daughter has a terrific year at school (even if it has to be in Florida;-)

    BTW, my sister-in-law works in admissions there!

  3. What a wonderful story. So sweet.

    And the mystery writer in me think it could be the start of a fantastic book :-) The poet could be either the falsely accused stalker/killer or....


  4. Marian, I was thinking the same thing, but not a mystery. A YA book with the black haired girl as narrator. She can't stop thinking about this guy and this poem, especially after kissing yet another toad from her high school class. So how does she find him?

    What a cool thing, Maria! So glad you shared. But now I'm curious to know what the poem said! ;-)

  5. That is lovely. So glad he wasn't a stalker! So this kind of stuff actually happens in real life, huh? I thought romance was dead so thank you for disabusing me of that notion, Maria. Maggie

  6. How lovely. We are so cynical, but, in this case, good things prevailed. I hope your daughter a good year, and that she and will remember that special day. As I look back at those days, they seemed very special and almost magical. My daughters are in their forties now, but I still remember them just stepping out into the world.

  7. Lovely post. Sending a daughter off to begin her adult life is always scary for mom. My three girls all got married first then did college--guess I was a bad example since that's what I did too.


  8. Thanks for all the great comments! My internet capability has been spotty as I have been going from house to house to hotel. I think this would be a great idea for a book too:)