Thursday, May 29, 2008

Sunflowers for Mom


She’s sort of in and out of sleep
and part of it is that John can’t stay still.
He’s very intent on entertaining her
which is more than I have the will to do
and I admire his energy while
he admires my ability
to just sit with her for so long.

He comes with juice
and a spoonful of ice cream
and turns on her favourite music
and brings her a stuffed sheep.

He says that he will go and bring her sunflowers
but she has to promise to be here when
he gets back.

She nods yes that she promises
and seemingly seconds later
he arrives back with a huge
bunch of sunflowers
from the hill down the road.

I’ve heard the phrase
“her face lit up” but never really
understood it until
I saw my mother’s face
light up at the sight of that armful of vibrant yellow life.

Her movements aren’t completely coordinated
and she can no longer speak
but she reaches for the flowers
and holds them, glowing, while
John looks for a vase.

-Leah Costello

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