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A Forward Look, Backwards September 30, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Poetry.
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Today is Mom’s Birthday!

She’s “twenty-one plus” . . . and holding.

Happy Birthday, Mom!


A few years ago, we wanted mom and dad to move into a smaller place.  Mom didn’t want to move.  Dad was on the fence.  To encourage her to reconsider, I sent her a poem for her birthday ~ A Forward Look, Backwards.


A Forward Look, Backwards

Mom, as you know, we’ve moved around a bunch
One place at breakfast, another by lunch
In contrast, you’re more like an Oak tree
Roots deep in the soil, branches floating free

From the coast of Maine, to Paris at night
Hiking and biking, you’ve seen many a sight
But your roots remained in the Garden State
And your memories there have grown in weight

For forty-three years, you’ve stayed in one place
Adding rings ’round your trunk with grit and grace
Roots sinking deeper, memories growing
But, Mom, at long last – your age is showing


Four children grown, and off on their own
The seeds you planted have now been resown
And most of your rooms sit empty and bare
Silent echoes of laughter filling the air

One thing we have learned over the years
Moving about is no cause for tears
In each place, our memories came too
Now, I ask, what are you going to do?

Will you stay in a house, too big by far
Or . . . “would you like to swing on a star?
Carry moonbeams home in a jar
And be better off than you are . . .

Or would you rather be a mule?” *

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOM . . . whatever you decide.


The poem didn’t work.

A few more birthdays came and went.  In time, life made the decision for her ~ dad died last June and our childhood house has since been sold.


Life’s like that . . . always moving forward, even if we’re looking backwards.


Aah . . . that’s better!

* * * * *

* The rest of the stanza from Would You Like To Swing On A Star:

A mule is an animal with long funny ears
He kicks up at everything he hears
His back is brawny but his brain is weak
He’s just plain stupid with a stubborn streak . . .