Saturday, May 7, 2011

Remembering Mother

Although I can still hear my mother's voice in my head, the only physical representation of her voice that remains is on a cassette tape. She does two readings on this tape. The first is this poem, which I give you here as a Mother's Day present. The other is the Twenty-third Psalm.

The young mother set her foot on the path of life.
"Is this the long way?" she asked.
And the Guide said, "Yes, and the way is hard. And you will be old before you reach the end of it. But the end will be better than the beginning."

The young mother was happy, and she would not believe that anything could be better than these years. So she played with her children, she fed them and bathed them, taught them how to tie their shoes and ride a bike, and reminded them to feed the dog and do their homework and brush their teeth.

The sun shone on them and the young mother cried, "Nothing will ever be lovelier than this."

Then the nights came, and the storms, and the path was sometimes dark, and the children shook with fear and cold, and the mother drew them close and covered them with her arms. The children said, "Mother, we are not afraid, for you are near, and no harm can come."

And the morning came, and there was a hill ahead, and the children climbed and grew weary, and the mother was weary.
But at all times she said to the children, "A little patience and we are there."

So the children climbed and as they climbed they learned to weather the storms. And with this, she gave them strength to face the world. Year after year she showed them compassion, understanding, hope, but most of all unconditional love.
And when they reached the top they said, "Mother, we could not have done it without you."

The days went on, and the weeks and the months and the years. The mother grew old and she became little and bent. But her children were tall and strong, and walked with courage. And the mother, when she lay down at night, looked up at the stars and said, "This is a better day than the last, for my children have learned so much and are now passing these traits on to their children."

And when the way became rough for her, they lifted her, and gave her strength, just as she had given them hers. One day they came to a hill, and beyond the hill they could see a shining road and golden gates flung wide.

And the mother said, "I have reached the end of my journey. And now I know the end is better than the beginning, for my children can walk with dignity and pride, with their heads held high, and so can their children after them."

And the children said, "You will always walk with us, Mother, even when you have gone through the gates."

And they stood and watched her as she went on alone, and the gates closed after her.

And they said, "We cannot see her, but she is with us still."
--by Temple Bailey


Vee said...

New poem to me! It's really great, and so true. It brought tears to my eyes.

Secondary Roads said...

Thanks. The poem reminds me so much of Lillian Gomez, who passed a few years ago. She used to do readings on Mother's Day. I've passed it along to her husband in Connecticut. We still keep in touch with him.

You really blessed my day. God bless.

Ilene said...

Thanks for sharing. Mom spoke to numerous groups, especially women. Do you think this tape was from one of her talks?

vanilla said...

Vee, excellent.

Chuck, that you are blessed makes it worth the posting!

Ilene, I don't know the circumstances in which the tape was made. No clue.

Sharkbytes (TM) said...

Very nice- I wish it always worked that way.

vanilla said...

Joan, I get that it doesn't always work that way; but in an ideal world...