Friday, May 21, 2010

A Special Portrait


My Mother was ninety-seven and very far from strong,
But Rebecca was getting married and Mum wanted to come along.
Two nurses from the Nursing Home pushed her in a chair,
And we were so delighted to have her company there.
I bought a dress in lavender; her hair looked soft and neat,
But she couldn't see in a mirror that she looked very sweet.
Her eyes have an expression that twinkles though, by then,
She was completely blind and she would never see again.
But she looked into the camera and wished the couple well,
And though she couldn't see them no-one was able to tell.
She died only one month later, quietly, in her sleep.
And this is a portrait of her that I'm always going to keep.
Hers was a sort of courage that kept going stoically.
And I only hope that some of her has been passed down the line to me.
In Earlier Days.


                          Brenda Bryant

As you can see, this poem was written for a poster for schools, when I was working as a copywriter, after my retirement from teaching. I've re-typed it to make it easier to read.


Family Trees are enormous plants,
Sprouting with parents and uncles and aunts;
With brothers and sisters in every cranny
And, here and there, a special Granny.
Small baby cousins soon appear
For there's someone new almost every year,
 And weddings may bring us new relations
Who may even come from different nations!
The roots are down in the sweet, rich earth
Of a faraway land or the land of our birth,
And the future branches will sweep the sky,
Ever more leafy and ever more high.
Someone in the future will bear my name
And maybe their features will look the same!
Oh how lucky we are to be
Part of a beautiful Family Tree!


Sistertex said...

Through and through a lovely woman. You can tell this just by just reading your lovely commentary. A wonderful face to add to 'Face of the Week!' Thank you so much for sharing her with us. Just a marvelous post. Thank you again. Hugs.

Margaret Gosden said...

The earlier photo of your mother I never saw before, but how much she reminds me of your sister Molly.
Perhaps, at a good time, you can write about
Molly because I saw more of her when we were younger than I saw of your mother. All I remember is that your mother was very taken with the fact that I liked bread and butter so much! Nowadays, it is just
bread and marmalade. Forget about eating butter, if you can! Anyway, it is a very beautiful portrait to
have and to show your grandchildren.

Jo said...

What a lovely lady, your dear mother. A lovely tribute to her, Brenda. I love your Family tree poem as well. I'm learning the names of family in Arabic: mother, father, uncle, aunt, etc. As I read your poem, I repeated the different members in Arabic. My tutor always admonishes me to practice, practice! Thanks for sharing both these poems.

jay said...

Your Mum does look as if she was a very sweet and special person! And she was blessed, I think, to pass away quietly in her sleep. It's always seemed to me to be the best way to leave this earth.

What a very touching poem, and post. :)

Janet said...

I'm over visiting from Weekend Writer's Retreat - and so glad I came. Your poem about your Mom brought a tear to my eye - for her to have 'seen' the wedding and for all of you to have had the joy of her company at such a happy occasion before she passed!

And I love your Family Tree poem. I usually like to pick a favorite line, but they're all so great (and meaningful).

Thanks, Brenda :)

Alice Audrey said...

What a nice character portrait of your mother. Is this your Weekend Writer's Retreat entry?

Darlene said...

Your mother was still beautiful at 97. She must have been an amazing lady to have raised such a talented daughter.

I love your poem on the family tree.