Monday, February 1, 2010


This month's Creative Everyday theme is home. ( It's also my birthday month which got me thinking about my first real home, the one that's almost uncomfortable for me to contemplate, the place where I began--that oceanic womb of creation. In a very deep sense, "Mom" is the ultimate embodiment of home for me.

For months, this memory of my mother in her little beach chair kept bubbling up until I put it into words. The resulting lines seemed to capture both the frothiness and poignancy that can co-exist in a memory.

Snapshot of a Summer Day

Shiny, orange toes digging in the sand,

A floppy hat skitters toward the ocean’s edge,

Tiny legs scramble just in time,

A helium-filled Mom laughs more than usual,

Lighter in spirit and darker with freckles,

Engulfed in a collage of beach towels, pails, and sandals,

She inches closer to the cool water and action,

Ready to cheer on dribble castles and back floats.

After lunch, a well-worn path to candy Nirvana,

Sweaty quarters threaten to slip,

Skin tight from a sunburn facelift,

Razzles or a fudgsicle?

An impossible choice.

Impressions of a summer day,

Dad’s shoes crunch, crunch on the pebble drive,

Mrs. Dinatale teeters on cork wedges, cackling with a cocktail,

Mom flips through her magazine and scans the beach,

Silently counting her hatchlings,



A wave hooks our surfboards,

The sudden burst of speed thrills and churns,

Salty eyes sting as the Styrofoam warriors stagger to their feet,

That was a good one,

For sure, hey, get ready.

The hot breeze carries clucks of encouragement from the little chair,

The words drip off us, barely noticed,

Yet they coat us like the salt,

Unacknowledged and healing,

She is there, always there,

Constant as the tide,

Shiny, orange toes digging in the sand.


  1. I like this a lot, felt like a good book...okay just saw your a writer, that's not fair! See you around CED2010

  2. I LOVE the beach!
    Great picture in my mind too.


  3. oh how beautiful, Linda! I know what you mean about thinking of your mom as the ultimate embodiment of home... so true for me too!

  4. What a fantabulous Mom-portrait. THANK YOU!

  5. Razzles or Fudgsicle - still an impossible choice. And who know how much we loved those shiny, orange toes digging in the sand. Wow.

  6. Hey,

    I like the poem.

    I'm going to be in Cambridge, April 2-April 3. Any chance for a cup of coffee?

  7. Hey Sis, you forgot to say you are a "wife" and "sister" and "aunt" in your "about me" piece. I'm just