Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mama's Hands




Mama would be 71 on June 20. She's been gone for nine years. Has it been that long? For a long time after she died I still reached for the phone to call her and when I drove past her neighborhood I would get a lump in my throat or tears would gather in the corner of my eyes. I miss her so! There are little things I miss the most; going by to see her on a Saturday before she went to work. She always had fresh coffee made and a cake or something sweet to eat. That was the German in her - she would show her love by feeding you.

She always put her family first. Mama was not a modern, liberated woman. The only thing she ever wanted to be was a wife and mother.  She had a sweet and caring spirit and a sensitive soul and a forgiving heart. And she loved her grandchildren. I remember her last Christmas. Weak from her illness she had still managed to buy toys for the little ones and store them in the closet. I wrapped the presents for her and she gave me money to buy the rest.

Mama was never going to grow old. She had that European porcelain skin, not a wrinkle in sight. Mama believed in cold cream. And at 61 she still dyed her hair a rich, auburn color. Her hands were beautiful and didn't look like the hands of a waitress at all. Mama took care of her hands and she didn't go to a salon.

I look at my raggedy cuticles and chewed off nails and my wrinkled hands and wonder if there is some miracle cream that would give me hands like my mother had. I doubt it.

Happy Mother's Day,


Anita

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

"I Had a Choice Today"



I had a choice today
to feel sorry for myself
or wake up with a smile

I had a choice today
to speak with anger
or stop a careless word

I had a choice today
to break a promise I had made
or keep my word and follow through

I had a choice today
to lie, cheat, or to deceive
or be honest and tell the truth

I had a choice today
to hold myself in high esteem
or humble myself before the Lord

I had a choice today
to turn my back on someone who needed me
or bend over and help them back up

I had a choice today
to speak words of hatred
or speak encouraging words

I had a choice today
to nurse a grudge and carry a chip on my shoulder
or forgive as the Lord as forgiven me

I had a choice today
to wish that I was someone else
or accept the person God wants me to be

I had a choice today
to cry bitter tears for things I cannot change
or hope for a brighter future

I had a choice today
to reject my faith and turn my back on God
or accept him fully in my heart

I had a choice today
Did I make the wrong choice?
 Or did I choose the right way?

I had a choice today
because it's never too late
to get down on your knees and pray

Blessings,

c Anita M. Ashworth 2010


Sunday, May 2, 2010

"A Southern Childhood" - a Poem

I have been inspired to write a poem beginning with "I am" by published author and blogger Sheryl Ann Crawford, here, who has written many children's books. She recently highlighted a beautiful poem written by Janet, from West Virginia. I wrote this one with thoughts of my Tennessee cousins in mind.


“I Am”


I am from poor dirt farmers
Working in the fields
With backs hunched over
Wiping the sweat from their brow


And I am from the blue collar workers
Who worked a 40-hour week
Never asking for a hand-out
Just wanting to make a living


I am a singer of Gospel songs
Saved in a little country church
With folks waving their funeral parlor fans
In a chorus of “Amens”


I am from playing outside after dusk
Swatting mosquitoes on a hot, summer's eve
Walking to the corner grocery store
For a cold bottle of Coca Cola


I am from rusty pick-up trucks
Fishing ponds and coon dogs,
Cotton fields and tire swings
Listening to the whistle of a train


I am from a Southern childhood
From biscuits made from scratch
Sweet tea, and wraparound porches
And Jesus as my Savior


(c) Anita M. Ashworth 2010



Pictures

Growing up in my era we didn't take a lot of pictures. Of course, there were the school pictures, which I dreaded, and Mom rarely bought...