Thursday, September 11, 2008

Her Hands

I sit alongside my mother’s bed
As her life draws to a close,
Her body, frail and growing weak,
Can mostly only doze.

She stirs and reaches in the air
To grasp at invisible strands;
She settles back and sleeps again
And I gaze upon her hands.

Those hands, now wrinkled so with age,
The nerves, dead with disease:
So long she’s struggled to perform
Tasks which once came with such ease.

I think of all those hands have done
Throughout her many years
As child, wife, mother, and grandmom,
Through laughter and through tears.

While growing up it was her chore
The chicken’s neck to wring
For family dinners. (I’m amazed
She still could eat the thing!)

The years passed by and she became
The one we all called Mother
The “snapshot memories” of those hands
Pile one upon another.

Making cookies, sewing clothes,
Putting laundry on the line
Washing dishes, wrapping gifts,
Making homemade Valentines.

Soothing in the dark of night
If her kids were sick, had fears,
(But yes, those hands gave spankings too
To those same “sweet” children’s rears!)

Rolling our hair with bobby pins –
In the sixties, your hair had to flip! –
Five daily sack lunches, keeping (mostly!) straight
Who got mustard, who, Miracle Whip!

Though sometimes I pushed my mom’s hands away
In typical mom-daughter strife,
I know that I’ll miss the special touch
My mother’s hands had on my life.

I reach for her hand and clasp it in mine
And thank God in heaven above
That though these hands still, my heart will still know
My mother’s sweet labors of love.

Copyright 9/11/2008 Mocha with Linda


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22 comments:

Chris @ Come to the Table said...

This is so beautiful Linda!

Sandy said...

Thank you for sharing Linda. Makes me REALLY miss my sweet Mama.

sara said...

I am sitting here with tears in my eyes...that was a beautiful poem and tribute to your mom.

It touches me so because I am taking a trip with just my mom in Oct. I have commented several times that this might be the last trip we have together as her health is making it hard for her to travel. She frustrated me yesterday on the phone and I thought "this might be a long 2 weeks" Thanks for reminding me how special it will be and how I should not take one moment of it or her for granted!

JulieM said...

Beautiful.... Praying for you!

Xandra@Heart-of-Service said...

Oh Linda...that was beautiful. It captures how we all feel about our mother's hands. Hard and strong, but gentle and kind.

I heard a discussion one time about women having "hand lifts" to go along with their face and neck as to diguise their true age. I was appalled, because I think that one of the most beautiful things in the world is the hands of a real woman. Hands that have scrubbed dishes, held babies, clasped hands with her husband, comforted her children and reached heavenward in prayer. Those worn, rough hands contain the history of her life, and I can't think of anything more beautiful!

Xandra

Bethany@MyLifeinBlack&White said...

Wow. What a beautiful poem! It reminds me to treasure time with my loved ones during this short time we have on Earth.

Kelly @ Love Well said...

Oh my WORD Linda. That is BEAUTIFUL. What a tribute to your Mom.

Becoming Me said...

So beautiful, Linda

BP said...

This is so sweet Linda. Praying for you.

Deb said...

My mom has been with our Lord for 20 years now and one of the things I remember the most was her hands, and I have her hands. . . hold her tight. Linda, I am in prayer for you. God Bless

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

Linda, I'm going to see my mom this weekend; your poem confirmed that for me. Blessings on you and your sweet mom.

Amy Wyatt said...

Linda,
What a beautiful poem and picture. Praying for you.
Amy

CandaceCalvert said...

Linda, this was wonderful . . . and brought tears. I lost my own mother one year ago on Monday. I remember taking photos of her hands on a visit not long before . . . your words touched my heart.

Thank you, and prayers to you all.

Candy

Rachel said...

What a beautiful poem!

Lorie said...

How Beautiful!
I just sang at the funeral of a good friend's Sweet Mother-she was wanting a song like this-she said they have them for Dads but not for Moms. You truly have a gift and I apply it in my life to my sweet Mom-But I would give anything to live in such a way my daughters and son would say these things about me!
Be blessed!
Lorie
May I share this with my friend-make her a copy?

Christina said...

Very touching and so glad I got to read this today. Just beautiful.

A Stone Gatherer said...

Beautiful and heart touching poem! What a gift!

Gayle @ thewestiecrew said...

What a beautiful tribute to your Mom, Linda. So touching...

Leah said...

Beautiful, simply beautiful.

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

Linda, I missed these posts for some reason!

I'm so sorry for your loss...the poem you wrote is absolutely beautiful.

Praying for you bloggy friend.

midlife mommy said...

That was a beautiful tribute to your mom. I lost my mom just over a year ago. We were very, very close, and I understand what you are going through right now. Hugs, hugs, hugs.

quilly said...

What an incredibly beautiful tribute to your mother.