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Tag Archives: Mother’s Day

found poem: memory

Mother’s Day

jik to DAK undatedHacked from an envelope and illustrated, figure and ground, with colored pencils of many hues, this is probably a picture of my mother. Though without words (except for my name on the reverse side signed with a backwards J), her red hair is a giveaway.
And the dress? Well, what can be said about the dress, except that Dorothy would have worn it if it existed. However old I was when I drew it, and however conventionally she put herself together on the outside, I already understood that within her there was a zany being aching for expression.
Happy Mother’s Day.

Mother’s Day

first Mother's Day jik-DAKIt’s my first Mother’s Day. I’m three months old; my mother is 37. Neither of us look entirely certain about the arrangement.

In my baby book, Dorothy has already noted that I “grew high and wide from the beginning,” that I was “unusually greedy for food” and that by the time this photo was taken, she had already added cereal to my formula because I “was always hungry.” Though it’s hard to know what she might have imagined about motherhood, this was more than she had bargained for.

It took her a long time to realize that neither she, nor I, could go back. The clock would not be unwound; her carefree life could not be recaptured.

Her hope for that miracle persisted, but, to her enormous credit, she became Mommy. If her enthusiasm for the role was limited, my father and Dr. Spock offered balance and direction. I thrived, grew high and wide, and learned to tread lightly.

I’m grateful — for all she did right and all the many, many things she could have, but didn’t, do wrong. Still, I wish that somehow she could have had the life and happiness she wanted.

Happy Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day…

Mother's Day tree peony

My mother’s birthday was at the end of May. One year, in honor of the date, a cousin gave her a cymbidium orchid plant. Thereafter, year after year, for decades, the plant would send out a long dull green flower stalk that would bloom, unfailingly, gorgeously, on Mother’s Day.

In my back yard, looking like a twisted stick for half the year, the tree peony never seems like it’s going to do much. Yet, except for last year, when it was too winter-battered to bloom, two small buds reliably unfurl into blowsy blooms just in time for Mother’s Day, pale pink paper-thin petals cupping a jeweled center to dazzle daughters, bees and hummingbirds for a brief May day, then droop and drop, to begin the long preparation for next year’s holiday.

Happy Mother’s Day.