Friday, May 7, 2010

A Poem for My Mother: Hope by Janet Wong


It’s been a difficult and emotionally draining week for me. I lost track of time. I actually thought it was Thursday when I awoke this morning.

I’m dedicating this post to my dear mother–who is going through an extremely difficult period in her life. She has been the best of mothers. I learned from her what being a mother is all about. She is the most selfless person I have ever known.
My Mother with One of Her Great Grandsons

When I realized what day it was, I began to wonder what I could post for this Poetry Friday. I didn’t have to think long. I went to the shelf where I keep my friend Janet Wong’s book The Rainbow Hand: Poems About Mothers and Children. Following is the final poem in Janet’s award-winning poetry collection.


Hope
by Janet Wong

In my own mother
I can see

I will need the strength of a bear,
strength to threaten those who would hurt my child—

Give me this strength.

I will need the softness of a deer,
to nudge my child down the right path—

Give me this softness.

I will need the courage of a fox
to leave my child behind, drawing harm my way—

Give me this courage.

I will need the calm of a tree,
knowing fires will happen,

and I will need to keep the hope I hold inside myself,
knowing that after the fires,

things grow again.


The Rainbow Hand received a Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Honor Award in 2000.
You can find out more about the book here: http://www.janetwong.com/books/therainbowhand.cfm
My Daughter Sara and Me
********************

Diane has the Poetry Friday Roundup at Random Noodling.

Happy Mother’s Day!!!!!

11 comments:

jama said...

What a lovely poem. SO sorry to hear about your difficult week. Love and prayers to you, your mom, and your daughter -- three generations of strong, beautiful women!

Elaine Magliaro said...

Thanks, Jama. I am fortunate to have a wonderful daughter and family and supportive friends. I'm glad my mother is so close by so I can visit her more than once a day.

Julie Larios said...

Elaine - I am going through something similar with my own mother now, and I have a poem pinned to the wall - it's by Laurie Lee (who is most famous for his autobiographical look at British village life, titled Cider with Rosie.) I won't paste the poem in here, but you can see it at this web site:
http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/apples/

I find it comforting to "welcome the ripe, the sweet, the sour,/ the hollow and the whole."

Amy LV said...

Elaine,
What a beautiful way to honor your mother during this hard time. Best wishes and strong thoughts to you all.
Warmly,
Amy

Grace Lin said...

this is such a lovely poem and moving poem. I hope things get easier with your mother--sending you good wishes.

Anonymous said...

Nice poem mom...you always pick great ones. I love you very much, so sorry you have to go through this. Grammy is a wonderful person and I have been so lucky to have her around this long. Like everything, we will get through the difficult times. Hugs and kisses!
-Sara

Laura said...

Elaine,

I'm sorry to hear of your Mom's troubles. It sounds like you have a wonderful family. What a blessing it is to be so close, physically and emotionally.

Hope things go smoother this week. Thanks for sharing such a wonderful poem.

Laura Evans
all things poetry

Mary Lee said...

Cyber hugs for you and your mom and your daughter.

Jules at 7-Imp said...

Happy Mother's Day, Elaine! I'm sorry you had a difficult week. What a gorgeous poem and gorgeous mother and daughter you have.

Radu Prisacaru said...

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laurasalas said...

Elaine, what a heartfelt tribute to your mom. Sending wishes of peace and strength your way!