I like my mom...a lot. Her father recently passed away and after sorting and cleaning and organizing all of his belongings, hoping to keep her own life simpler, she requested that we not give her "things" for Christmas...so I wrote this.
“Everywhere, They are Wisest”
You are my giving tree;
And I am the greedy—needy—little boy.
You give your shade, your fruit,
Bark, wood, stump,
And I take.
You give joy in the form of wooden toys and puzzles,
An inflatable clown named Bozo
You scrape down my wallpaper.
And I scrape to gather every bit of you that my memory can hold…
To savor when you’re gone and I miss your smell, your voice, and your help.
You buy dress shirts, but give Nate so much more than fabric
You give confidence and assurance.
When the self-sacrifice of stay-at-home motherhood and supportive-wifedom overwhelm me, I dial the numbers that my fingers know like memorized music,
And find a feather pillow where fear lands gently,
And is gradually absorbed in compassion.
You give sanity and peace.
It flows like a river, for a few days…then dams up in frustration and loneliness--
And I call.
And you are, again, a cistern of comfort
Giving your ears and your heart, made tender and empathetic by similar--
You give insight and perspective.
And I take.
Greedily, feasting on the wisdom of your life.
You give small business loans, literary inspiration,
Homemade granola that fills my stomach…
And my soul with the satisfying satiety of home.
You give at birthdays, holidays, every day
Taking precious little thought for yourself.
Like the words of a familiar song,
“Give away, oh, Give away…”
But wherever you go and wherever you’ve been
Everything and everyone is “greener…”
My roots are made of all that giving—gone deep—taken hold.
Now generating new life,
I am a giver, too.
I love you.Emily