• POETS SALON

      Wisteria tree at Caltech campus

      Wisteria at Caltech (Photo by Kath Abela Wilson)

      – 5/01/19

      Hosted by Kath Abela Wilson

      My mother was wisteria, though her everlasting scent was lavender. I inherited her natural calligraphy, strong and sure, with flourishes. Ninety-five years, her eager childlike eyes each day opened hopefully to wish the world well…

      unfinished even at the end morning glory

      ~ Kath Abela

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      Pris Campbell's mother, Augusta D Campbell, retirment photo in the local paper

      Pris Campbell’s mother, Augusta D Campbell, in her retirement photo in the local paper (Photo – The Pageland Progressive Journal)

      Pris Campbell

      dialing
      your old number
      mother
      how I want to tell you
      what happened yesterday

      My mother sold our family home in South Carolina in 1990 to move to Lake Worth, South Florida to live near me three years after she was widowed. She had begun having blackouts and knew I couldn’t keep flying up there but wanted to be near me, her only child. Six months after she moved I was hit hard with ME/CFS, a neuro immune illness, was bed-bound with limp muscles and dizzy. I could barely help myself, much less make her golden years golden. She became a mother again, coming over to sit with me several days a week and make a dinner large enough for leftovers for a couple of days. We spoke on the phone every day. When congestive heart disease took her six years later I felt lost. I kept dialing her old phone number daily and talking into the silence after the ‘not working’ message ended. It gave me a feeling of still being with her. One day a man answered and that ended that. I still have the urge to call her even now from time to time, but of course I can’t.

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      A photo of the hand of Katha abela's mom with rings

      My mother’s hands (Photo by Kath Abela Wilson)

      Jackie Chou

      My Mother’s Dreams

      With her beauty and keen fashion sense, my mother could have been a star. That is, if she was born in the right time, right place, which she wasn’t. She grew up in China back in days when creativity in women was not encouraged. So she took the route her society expected of women like her. She married my father, who was from a conservative family. Her own dreams unrealized, she put all her hopes in me to carry her legacy.

      I kept my head down
      at the talent agency
      not saying a word
      all the stars in the sky
      that didn’t include me

      I wrote this piece in remembrance of my mother and the influence she had on me growing up. I had never seen my mother physically beautiful. Shortly after I was born she had a stroke which left her face paralyzed on one side. Also her skin was roughened by all the hardship she endured in her life. But she had pictures of her as a dazzling young woman. She would show people those photos all the time. She wanted me to be like that young woman. Someone who stood out from the crowd. But I was a little shy.

      choosing plain dresses
      when I had fancy ones
      all my young life
      my mother worried
      what would become of me

      Ο Ο Ο

      A sun set on a hazy day. Photo titled Guinding light. Photo taken by robert kingston

      Guiding light (Photo by Robert Kingston)

      Robert Kingston

      Guiding light

      We walk in shadows, often not knowing what has gone before.

      providing light
      a young robin returns
      again she mentions
      her mother
      passing by

      I’d heard the term “pushing up daisies” as a kid, but never really understood the beliefs held in this flower until much later. The bridge between human and our mother earth providing some comfort.
      Now, as I walk through spring, I often reflect on mum’s view had she been around to see how her influence continues to bloom in her grandchildren.

      calling time
      a cuckoo settles
      on the tree
      holding memories
      of mother

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      A blue rose made of satin by Kath Abela Wilson

      Elva’s Blue Rose by Kath Abela Wilson

      Frank Tassone

      a lullaby
      of Ireland’s creation
      Mom would sing to me
      a soft rustle of oak leaves
      from a whisper of wind

      Mother Memories: Quotes and Credits

      The short forms of Pris Campbell have appeared in numerous journals and have received many awards. One book of tanka, “Squall Line on the Horizon” was published by a small press. A former Clinical Psychologist, sailor and bicyclist until sidelined by ME/CFS, she still makes her home in Lake Worth, Florida where she remains mostly housebound.

      Jackie Chou, writes about her mother: “I didn’t mind her not being beautiful anymore. She was my mother and that was all that mattered. I wish I had told her that.” Jackie lives in Pico Rivera, meets weekly with Poets on Site in Pasadena and other workshops, and shares her poems in many journals and anthologies worldwide and at many local readings and events.

      Robert Kingston, a previous contributor to “The poetry corner,” reflects on a mother’s influence. A poet born in the docklands of East London, he now lives in a leafy village on the outskirts of Chelmsford, Essex, UK. Focusing on Japanese genre since being introduced to haiku a few years ago, he enjoys being part of nature and capturing what inspires in his words.

      Frank Tassone, of Montebello, New York, is a writer, teacher, husband, and a father. He fell in love with writing ever since he wrote his first short story at the age of 12 and first poem in high school. His free verse and short form poetry has appeared in many international journals and anthologies. He has worked as a special education teacher in New York City High Schools for the past twenty years.

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      We welcome and encourage your response, especially in the form of a short poem, by leaving a comment below.

      End of article

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      Contributor

        • Kathabela Wilson

          Kathabela Wilson is a local poet/writer/artist and musician. Her Poets Salon has become an international respected must read in the poetry world. She's the creator and host of the Pasadena-based group, “Poets on Site.”

          Colorado Boulevard is your place for enlightening events, informative news and social living for the greater Pasadena area.
          We strive to inform, educate, and work together to make a better world for all of us, locally and globally.

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      Comments

      1. Kath Abela Wilson says:

        Dear Dianne, i thik the word mother was left out in the first stanza! You might want o form a haiku ir haiku set or cherita from this and send to femku journal? Or the cherita journal or the dark focusd new buttefly journal of Lori Minor?

      2. diannemoritz says:

        Lovely tributes to mothers. One morning I woke up with this thought running through my head: my mother was a poem. We had always had a contentious relationship, but wrote down these words….

        My was was a poem
        conceived in love,
        rosy, perfect at birth.

        My mother was a poem
        marred by sexual abuse
        self-medicated with liquor

        My mother was a poem, once lovely

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