Mother

March 18, 2010
By Lauren Fisher BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
Lauren Fisher BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I remember all the summers spent together in our home,
we’d sit and talk for hours while I looked out the window.
I would watch the neighbor girls and boys crisp in sun soaked joy,
As they ran through their yards, showing off the latest toys.

So vivid are your warnings on the dangers of the world.
You told me to be kind and sweet, and not to talk to girls.
You warned me of the terrors of the vacant suburban streets,
of Mr. Frank’s fierce old rottweiler, eager to break free.

As for the countless neighborhood pedophiles lurking in unmarked vans,
I never did encounter one but I remember all our plans:
If ever I was offered candy or anyone grabbed at me,
you told me I should “run and fight and really cause a scene.”

I guess that’s why when I was five and my teacher gave me a treat,
I yelled and flailed my arms around as I ran out of my seat.

When I was eight you bought me the purple overalls,
and after that I ate my lunch alone in the bathroom stalls.

I still recall the time when I was twelve and you chased after my bus,
to remind me to zip up my coat and when you kissed me, how I blushed.

I can hear the children’s voices chanting even now,
“Mama’s boy” they used to call me when I passed them in the hall.
The reckless other children shot spitballs at my head;
I always just ignored them and kept walking, like you said.

The mocking and the torment never did end;
but then, I’ve had you mother,
so at least I’ve had a friend.


The author's comments:
In the poem Mother I focused mainly on portraying the consequences of over parenting. My intent was not for a reader to read the poem and decide that they will never discuss the dangers of world with their children for fear that they may create an overly sheltered child like the speaker of my poem, but rather to keep society aware that there are actual consequences that accompany over protecting children. Content wise I decided to use the speaker as a symbol for children everywhere that are not allowed to live their lives. This poem plays off of a fear that many parents have. No one wants to think that they produced a social outcast. It is human nature to want to be liked and even more so for our offspring. The fact that someone would reject an innocent child just for being dependent on his mother is one that would shake most mothers to the core. It is a reality that most refuse, that if too much emphasis is placed on protecting children from everything then they become unable to face the world, like the bullies in the story that the speaker simply ignores.

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