Tuesday, March 20, 2012

my favourite things / it's her freckles

It's her freckles I remember the most
soft in colour
blended almost as one
and some so small and close
they seem like the Milky Way at night

tonight was one of those nights
I remembered her

with the freckles
come the smiles
and for some reason I see her
with her first husband
standing each
one foot on
one foot off
on their tandom bicycle
in the sand
at the beach
in the sun
a turban on his head
and a smile
so big
I should know him
but I wasn't even born when
he died so quickly
it made my mom bitter
against God
and sometimes

my mom
a beauty
dark auburn red curls
long and bouncy to her shoulders
her eyes wide like a movie star she loved
her body gently volumnous
and strong in her
old hockey player fashion
and still such
a lady

she married my dad
after my real mom died

the one who adopted me
and loved having a little girl
and her big brother
and poured out all her heart on us

these freckles were new
and came with her laughter
the rest I forgave her for
because I know she hurt
and couldn't get rid of the pain

how does a girl of eight know this

it has been so many years
and now tonight
with the Milky Way
so thick against the black sky
I smile remembering her freckles
how the sun would catch them
and juggle them across her arms
on a summer's day
and like the sparkle
of the falling star in the east
brilliant in its last flame
her soft eyes would sparkle fun
and all would be well with the world

on the good days

I forgive her
for the others

like the falling stars
glimmering across the horizon
then gone
I miss her
all of her
the "just call me"
when she was brand new to us
and how a summer later
I shouted "MOM"!
and almost swallowed my tongue
at the surprise
and that it actually felt good

to say Mom

the stars were so many tonight
the Big Dipper sat balanced
above the Christmas tree at the horses
the tall one we tied a sack around
so that the horses wouldn't get pitchy
and then it died 
the string too tight
so it stands tall like my little
Christmas trees in March
the needles gone
but the memory still strong

the light from the goat stall
illuminates the frill of tiny icicles
along the eaves
white against the night sky
created all in just one day
this sculpted beauty

I turn out the light
and again
all I see are her freckles
and a smile
the stars so wide
against the night sky

we sit
reading books together silently
in the stream of sunshine
in the afternoon
before supper
I sit
watching her play solitare
I watch her
paint and polish her nails
I watch as she
reads the paper
and works her crossword

the sky is full of words
like a crossword puzzle
and the emotions they bring
and the beauty they can hold
should we choose

it is always a choice
this lavishing of love
on those around us

My moms always had their special days
those are the ones I will remember

family puzzles at Christmastime
Twister... all of us tangled in love
on a piece of dotted plastic
tangled in wonderful laughter
mom taking these two young kids
to a Beatle's concert
some things can never be forgotten
I still see Ringo Starr
hammering out on those drums
the people screeching
adreneline flowing free
old mothers
kids fascinated
at how the old ones
leap up and down and grow hoarse
full of screaming
us smiling
and remembering
"I love you ya ya ya"
the lights blinking
like the stars tonight

summer creek crawling
and picnics
so much family
it must have gone
way back to Adam...
whipped creme play fights
frisbees and balls
pure joy

I stopped at the house and put out the lights
went back out to see the night
one last time
one last mom hug
and dad hug
and see you soon hug
a thank you Jesus hug
lifted prayers and hugs for my beloveds
then a turn back into the house

home fires going
cat waiting to curl up
and purr
as I remember
Milky Ways
and smiles

my favourite things