Saturday, July 21, 2007

At the Next Table



Son gently guiding mother
her steps unsure.
Son gently seats mother
chair quickly set beneath her as
she trembles and sits.

Pink pants, so easy to pull on -
Cream sweater envelops
keeping her warm in the shade
of a hot summer day.
Sturdy shoes
Knee-Hi's
Hair just so
She is ready for a morning out.

How delicious the special pastry he brings her.
How filled with anticipation the
special promise of ice cream on Monday.
A son's promise to a treasured and aging mother.

Slow and simple the questions
posed to guide a conversation.
Mother becoming child.
Patience now a requirement.

Long silences punctuated by sought after comments.
Did you have fun at the wedding?
Did you enjoy the food?
Could you hear the ceremony?

Encouragement to say the words - to talk
A reminder that more than a nod is needed.
The effort of conversation -
so swift and sparkling in youth -
now slowed to a languid drift.

Arise now. Step carefully.
Soon to return to the long rest.


10 comments:

Tammy said...

WOW!!! Annie this was an amazing poem and the ending brought a tear as I remembered your mom. HUGS

Tinker said...

This is so tender and poignantly sweet! Though my own mom is in spirit - she went very quickly a few years ago, I'd like to think I would have been as gentle and thoughtful a caretaker as this young man. Blessings to him - and to you for taking note and sharing their story.

Julie Marie said...

"Mother becoming child." Annie, this is wonderful. My grandma was always cold, even on a hot day.

Julie

Wanda said...

Annie: This is so precious, so tender, so real....! I visited my Aunt Cassie this morning in the resthome, she's 97....Today she was crying...Why does God keep me here, was her question....I want to go home, Wanda, I want to see Bud, and Your mother, I just want to go home.
A tear fell, as I prayed with her that the Lord would lean down and listen to her request, but in the meantime, give her daily strength to make it one more day.

Annie, thank you for having such a sensitive spirit for others.

PEA said...

That is a beautiful poem indeed, Annie and I could see it all in my mind. My mom is going on 76 and I see her starting to slow down...breaks my heart to see the years starting to take their toll on her. xoxo

Sue "Sioux" Seibert said...

What a wonderfully poignant poem. Hope you are well.

tongue in cheek said...

Oh Annie
Your compassion is evident by your words.

Geri said...

Annnie,From a nurse for 21 years, your poem was beautiful. I've watched from a distance as family after family adjusts to the needs of elderly parents, and am always moved by the blessed simplicity of some of the love shown. Thanks for the poem!!

LisaOceandreamer said...

This is so amazing. It resonates with me, your words and the image - it takes me back to a time oh so recent. You speak right to the soul.
XOXO
Love,
Lisa

annie lockhart said...

annie...your writing is beautiful...and this poem is so very touching as i was just with my momma for the weekend. so much truth!