A poem for Mama
Thank you mama
Thank you for 18 years of food
And 5,000 glasses of water
Thank you for driving 40 minutes to pick me up when I was too scared to spend the night. Twice.
Thank you for the car
And the phone
Thank you for building my bones
Thank you for carrying me for 9 months
I know that two hearts are much heavier than one
And even after 20 years technically alone, your heart is still my home
Thank you for never ever yelling at me except that one time when we were going to move to Berkeley
And then I deserved it
Thank you for letting me wear sweatpants as long as I wanted
And taking me to buy jeans the day I didn't
Thank you for giving me space to fall
And always being there to put bandaids on my bruises
Thank you for teaching me that it's ok to cry
Thank you for the art supplies
Thank you mama
For raising me to walk in the woods with my face turned toward the sky
Thank you for teaching me the name of every plant we passed
And for showing me not to be afraid of the night
Thank you for teaching me the benefit of staying still and watching the world with my soul wide open
Thank you for not letting me quit
Even though after 3 years of violin lessons I really felt like it
After all that time I'm glad I could play those strings I'm glad you taught me the meaning of things like geography. And kindness
And how I should always bring a water bottle and a sweater just in case it gets cold
And I hope you know in my eyes you will never be old.
And I don't know how you always know things so well
Like where the yogurt is in the fridge
And when I ask "mom what was the name of the plant with little pink flowers and soft leaves like lily pads that I would sometimes paint and make into prints?"
You know it's geranium
Or when I say "hey mama what was the plant with the little vine twists that would pop open sometimes if you touched them?"
You answer "impatiens"
You always know what the right answer is
And mama, I know this is not a lanyard and I know that I owe you more than I could ever pay back
So thank you for giving me all that I have.
Thank you for holding me all the times I've been really really sad
And even though sometimes you don't answer your phone I know that I'll never be truly alone
You'll always call back
You'll always be there to teach me how to tie bows around my knee and lift me up to the places I can't reach
Thanks for always being you,
And thanks for making me