Those Winter Sundays"Love's austere and lonely offices." I love that line. Today is Mother's Day and I'm thinking of the many austere and lonely offices my mother's love holds--the things for which she is never thanked. I would like to thank her for a great deal of many things, like roses in the garden, music on the piano, and meals on the table. I would like to thank her for smiles, hugs, laughter, and beauty. It is her quirks that I love, like the way she leaves a dozen pairs of reading glasses scattered throughout the house. Or, her forgetful moments and silly sayings that she kindly lets us chide her about. I know little of love's austere and lonely offices, but I do know my mother is a good woman and I love her for this goodness.
Robert HaydenSundays too my father got up early
and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold,
then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather made
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.
I'd wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking.
When the rooms were warm, he'd call,
and slowly I would rise and dress,
fearing the chronic angers of that house,
Speaking indifferently to him,
who had driven out the cold
and polished my good shoes as well.
What did I know, what did I know
of love's austere and lonely offices?
Also, search this blog for Owen Sheers' "Not Yet My Mother" and Billy Collins' "Lanyard," both posted last May, and Collins again just recently. Great poems with a nod to mothers.
And to my sister, thank you for reading this little blog of mine.