Mother Thoughts

The dark-eyed Juncos have returned
and the baby was born last night—on
the eve of our first real snow. I was
driving through a pounding rain–watching
the tug struggle under the barge of coal;
black dust lost in black sky, sky spilling
into river—when she called to say,
eight pounds and four and a half ounces,
and I could only pray to get home safe
as the giant tractor trailers sprayed into
my line of vision. Where are the lines
on the road? I told the boys what to do
if they ever run a car into a river (I gripped
the steering wheel tight). Roll down the
window a bit so the pressure on the doors
won’t trap you inside, I said. Who thinks of
these things? The oldest one asked. Last week
I told them how to put out a grease fire—a
fear I had as I ran six miles away from
the house and wondered if they would try
to make bacon while I was gone. Salt,
I said. But their dad said baking soda
was better. So I looked it up and decided
they needed to learn how to use the
fire extinguisher. The baby was born
last night. And the snowbirds flit about
the feeder. And the flecks of white
drift softly down…without a sound.

This week I’m sharing poetry with the community at One Stop Poetry for One Shot Wednesday. Join us? Find out more about it here.


  1. says

    Motherhood: a continually flowing list of things to tell them, things to teach them, things to warn them about. And now, my daughter will learn all of these as she has her first. Glad you arrived home safely! We just had to turn on our heater during the past couple of days, so we haven’t even worried about winter driving conditions. Thank you for your sweet comment on my post. Love, Granny 🙂

  2. says

    Yep. I have those same kinds of thoughts–what haven’t I warned them about? Glad I’m not the only one. Never quite had the skill to turn the thoughts of my overanxious heart into poetry, however. 🙂

  3. says

    The mix of details here is wonderful, Laura. You convey well that sense of being a part of both a big and a small world, of needing to be ever-vigilant, to think ahead, to plan, and to be.

  4. says

    Wonderful stream of consciousness feel to your poem. Covers a great deal of ground through the given lines. From thoughts of birth to possible death with plenty in between. Enjoyed reading it very much

  5. says

    I always love your writings. I can see all the activities, new baby, mom driving the car in the rain as panic grips and the rain pounds down.
    Then the worry of safety… it is all there and so visual.
    Bless you as you continue to bless us.

  6. says

    Beautiful. Yes, motherhood is like that – like we have to make sure they have the information for all the eventualities that might happen…cocooning them with our love-wisdom.

  7. says

    So many things they have to know.

    Afraid mine will not know many of them. I forget.

    But we’re good with how to put out the kitchen fire. It comes up naturally sometimes, depending one what we’re cooking…

    Loved this, Laura.

  8. says

    I’ve told my kids the same thing… about our car going into the river and about rolling down the windows.

    Also what to do in case of a fire in the middle of the night; how to break the screen on the window, etc. What neighbors to run to…

    Just in case I’m not around. I think it natural to give them our 24/7 protection, and then we have to let it go and pray they’ll remember soft words spoken from a fretful heart.

    Beautiful thinking here, sister. Hope you are well and hope the walk to the manger is filled with lots of hope, joy, and promise this year.

    Peace, as well.


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