Monday, February 12, 2007

Mothers in Poetry

It seems that my poetry theme for this term has picked me so to speak - it is mother. Not neccessarily my own mother although of course some of the work will inevitably include aspects of her. But about mothers in a general sense, what it means to be a mother, our relationship with our mothers and mothers in general.

here is a light hearted one:

The Hour of the Boys

This is the hour of the boys,
they face the world,
bags crouching hump like
on teenage backs,
heavy with the fears and wishes
of itinerate mothers,

mothers who spin socks from love,
and games bags, gloves,
who sandwich worry
between wholesome slices of neglect,
and write poetry secretly
in dark corners.

Pretty much every poet has written a mother poem from Edgar Allen Poe to Sylvia Plaith, one of my favourite is by Charlotte Ballard:

8.14 I Never Had a Mother

never had a mother
Who read “Hello Moon”
Fifty-seven times before
Tossing it behind the refrigerator

I never had a mother
Who brushed my hair
Before each day’s battle
Against primary foes.

I never had a mother
Who hugged me before
I slept and dreamed of
Gold that only I could acquire.

I did have a mother
Who cooked up soup
To last the three days
Before payday came.

I did have a mother
That roared like a lion
And took me to see
The doctor more times
Than she ought.

I did have a mother-
A piece, a part
As much as she could
Borrow against a Promise made –
That her children
Would never be
Raised by a stranger.
I barely knew her.

Charlotte Ballard


Angela said...

that was very pretty.

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