Sunday, March 04, 2007


My mother is an artist
She designs embroidery
- a dying art - and creates
any design she desires
her hands instruments
of a higher force

She explains to me
how this one is a fleur-de-lis
and how in the region
where we come from
it is made differently
from someplace else

With only one eye
the other is glass
she sees more than I do
She is dying
my heart is unsteady
I am powerless
a witness to her fate

My mother’s hands create
embroidery with many
names and meanings
She patiently explains
the subtle meanings
behind each motif

I listened in awe
while she explained
all of this to me
I had nothing to say

Now there is even
less to say as
Each day brings her
closer to her end
I drown in helplessness

She tells us she is sick, not stupid
she knows her death is near
If only I could relieve her suffering
I would do so until the end

She alternates between begging for death
then apologizes for doing this
She is my mother, she worries
about me, my mental health
how I will handle her death instead

I think about her hands flying quickly
the needle moving as tho she has 3 eyes
The pattern suddenly emerging
Then the design is near complete
like the course of my mother’s life

*This poem is published at Poetry Kite Anthology where only invited poets are published. Poetry Kite is administered by Jim Bennet.


  1. Beautiful use of the embroidery as an image for a life nearing completion. I also really appreciate the simple, sparse, restrained language you use to convey very basic emotions. Very nicely done!

    My grandmother is about ready to pass as well, and I could so read her into this piece. You have a real knack for using the specifics of your life to tap into the universal themes that we can all relate to...

  2. "the needle moving as tho she has 3 eyes"

    goes really well with the previous mention of eyes

    it is superb!

    just wish u had more imagery like noted :)