Saturday, February 28, 2009

Mother's Gifts

My beautiful Mother left us on Wednesday, February 18, 2009. I miss her being here in my world. I am heartbroken that I will never hear her voice again or touch her soft face. I will never kiss her or remind her once again of how special she is.

She lives in my sister and in me, within our treasured memories, within our DNA, inside our hearts, within the gifts she gave us. Her love of reading and her love of gardening are two major gifts she imparted to us both.

In the early Seattle spring my husband and I will add a beautiful plant to our garden in memory of Mother, something which will remind us of her love of flowers, her enjoyment of putting new life into the earth. Today she rests under the branches of a crepe myrtle tree which will celebrate her life in its summer blooms which thrive under the hot, Georgia sun. We placed a beautiful JW Stannard windchime in the branches which sway above her. When we visited her grave before we left Georgia soft music was playing in the stillness of the late afternoon.

Rest, dear Mother, rest. You are deeply loved and remembered always.

An Observation

True gardeners cannot bear a glove
Between the sure touch and the tender root,
Must let their hands grow knotted as they move
With a rough sensitivity about
Under the earth, between the rock and shoot,
Never to bruise or wound the hidden fruit.
And so I watched my mother's hands grow scarred,
She who could heal the wounded plant or friend
With the same vulnerable yet rigorous love;
I minded once to see her beauty gnarled,
But now her truth is given to me to live,
As I learn for myself we must be hard
To move among the tender with an open hand,
And to stay sensitive up to the end
Pay with some toughness for a gentle world.

May Sarton
Originally published in A Private Mythology, 1966

Let Evening Come

Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.

Let the cricket take up chafing
as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.

Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.

Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.

To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.

Let it come, as it will, and don’t
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.

Jane Kenyon
From Collected Poems
Copyright © 2005 by the Estate of Jane Kenyon

A Photograph of Mother only 3 weeks before her death


mm said...

Sky, I am so sorry. The shock and grief you describe are natural, you were obviously very close.

This is a lovely tribute to your mother. You and your family will be in my thoughts. As the plant your choose grows in your garden, may your memories of her bring peace and comfort

leslee said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Such beautiful photos, and she looks very happy.

I lost my mom only a year and a half ago, so I know what it's like. A friend told me at the time that it's a body blow to lose your mother and that it takes three months to feel physically yourself again. I found that to be true. Take good care of yourself, cherish your memories, and take all the time you need to grieve. Her love will always be with you.

kerrdelune said...

Oh Sky, my heart goes out to you. Your mother was beautiful. She looked sweet and loving, and oh so strong. What a smile she had, what grace.

Do be kind and gentle with yourself, my friend, give yourself time to rest and heal. There is an old saying that "what is remembered lives", and so your beautiful mother does indeed live on. Such a bright light light can never go out, never in a thousand years...

Wenda said...

Oh Sky, What sad news. I am so sorry for your loss. Your mother sounds and looks so lovely. You have paid her such a thoughtful tribute. I partiuculary love the Sarton poem. Take good care of your tender heart.

Tabor said...

Your tribute is lovely and tender and lets us, who did not personally know her, understand her grace and beauty. Nothing I can write will ease your pain, but you were so fortunate to have had her in your life.

Pauline said...

This is a beautiful tribute to your mother. I am so sorry to hear that you no longer have her with you to see and touch and talk with. You will find, over time, that you will do these things so often in memory they will begin to seem real. There is great comfort in that for those of us left behind. After the initial see-saw of emotions, each day will get a little easier until one day you will think of her and smile and the deep cut of loneliness will be blunted.

Tammy said...

What a beautiful tribute Sky! I'm saving these lovely poems. She will always be near.


kenju said...

Sky, she was a beautiful woman. I am so sorry about your loss, and I hope that your wonderful memories of her will sustain you in the years to come.

Carolyn said...

What a difficult time for you. We send lots and lots of sympathy and hugs to you over the internet.

Your tribute to your mother tells of her strength and beauty making us wish we also had known her.

The poems are keepers

Keep her close in your memories

mb in Port Angeles said...

Beautiful photos. I'm so sorry for this sad time you are having.

My ma is almost 91, and starting to lose ground rapidly. Not nearly as peaceable about it as your mom seems.

Brenda said...

The photographs of your mother show her to be a beautiful woman with love in her gorgeous eyes... you have been very blessed, Sky, to have her, and I also am sad to hear of her passing. While grief does diminish over time, there is no consolation for the deepest grief for in those feelings of loss is the remembrance of the love and the love always lives. Your tribute is simple, profound, and beautiful and a honour to the flower she was, and is. The poems are beautiful. As is the plant you will plant in the Spring, and the chimes which sing from the myrtle tree...

Many blessings, sending you warmth, and hugs

Zhoen said...

My deepest condolences.

Remember to tell all the funny stories about her.

MB said...

I think losing a mother may be one of the hardest things. She does live on in you and in your heart and she will live on in your garden. And the memories you have of her and all she gave you will be a source of strength for you always. Tale good care.

One Woman's Journey said...

Sky, I am so sorry for your loss.
My thoughts and prayers are with you this early morning.
What a beautiful tribute you wrote for your mother.

colleen said...

What a wonderful online memorial, very moving. I can feel the brightness of her spirit and the depth of your love and respect for her. I can almost hear her windchime and smell her blossoming tree. Ironic that I have traveled to be with my mother as you just did.

Thinking of you and your sister. xo

Anonymous said...

Dear Sky,
Thank you for sharing with us the loss of your mother in this beautiful post. Indeed, she is within you deeply and forever. I am holding you in my thoughts.

Thank you, too, for your support and encouragement for me and my writing. I appreciate it so much.

nova-san said...

Your mother was a lovely, lovely woman, and her beauty is reflected in her graceful, elegant smile.

I am so very sorry to hear of your loss of her. My deepest condolences.

She lives forever through your memories. I'll look forward to reading of your memories of your beautiful mom.

Dale said...

Oh, I'm sorry, Sky.

rdl said...

Sky, I'm so sorry for your loss, my sincere sympthaties. Very nice memorial.

Beverly said...

So sorry for you...having lost my mother almost 12 years ago, I know the ache you feel in your heart. When your heart does not ache, it feels empty, knowing she is gone. In time you will smile again when you think of her, and the memories will be is still so soon for you.

liz elayne lamoreux said...

i am so sorry dear sky.

truly beautiful photos.

sending you blessings and thinking of you and enveloping you in a deep, wide hug.

Celia said...

Sky, I'm sorry about your loss of your mother. I think that is just about the most difficult thing we experience, take care with yourself.

dweezila said...

thank you for the gorgeous note you left on my blog this morning. I've now seen your mother and read your words to her. They are healing to me, thank you so much for reaching out.

kate smudges said...

What a terrible loss, Sky ~ I am sad to hear about your mum's death. It is wonderful that you will plant a special plant to your garden. It will always remind you of your mum. She will be there with you in spirit. The poems you chose here are so beautiful ~ May Sarton's especially to me.