Thursday, October 29, 2009
Some years ago Pearl Bailey recorded a song titled, "Mama, a Rainbow." The lyricist wrote of unique presents he might give his mother...some gift to surpass all those that had gone before. His ideas were imaginitive and mostly impossible. Thinking of that old song prompted me to make a list of my own.
How wonderful it would be to hand Mama a reservoir of liquid sunsets to swim in whenever she pleased. Or, be able to hand her the reins of a diamond-saddled silver charger to carry her to Camelot, or Shangri-la. What about a golden door, always open, to that ever-blooming Secret Garden? Or, consider one perfect, cobalt blue and star-strewn night for Molther to fall asleep curled up in the hand of God; with a dream of girlhood to go with it; a dream so real a pale blue ribbon from yesterday would be on her pillow in the morning, along with the scent of Lily of the Valley. And years! Oh , yes! I would give her lots of extra spun-gold, carefree years.
All of us would like to see our mother's eyes shine with joy at whatever we choose to give her on Mother's Day, or her birthday. Because if we are blessed enough to still be able to look at her beautiful face we want her to know how very much we love her.
In my mother's case it is doubly difficult to find a gift because she is ...not an average woman. For years I had my suspicians and they were confirmed not long ago when she informed me she needed to shop for a black leather out fit. Surely I hadn't heard her correctly, "Black leather?"
"Yes, a jacket and a pair of pants."
"Oh, you mean for one of the grandkids?"
"Now Audrey, which one of the kids could possibly need an outfit like that?"
Who indeed? And yet it was an ensemble my 89-year-old mother deemed a must-have for her wardrobe. Quickly, I looked at this lady who brought me into the world. It was she alright."You want to purchase leather pants and a jacket?"
That's right with silver buttons and lots of fringe."
The matriarch of our family is as alert, concise and witty as she has always been, and it never entered my mind to think she had slipped a cog overnight. "Mother,what is all this about?"
She glanced sideways at me, lifted her head a few inches and answered, "I'm riding with the gang."
This was sounding serious--maybe even dangerous. I began to recall the fact that my mother had always been a brave individual. She had many daredevil childhood exploits to her creditm and when I was a baby one of Mom's favorite pastimes was doing barrel rolls over P:uget Sound in an open-cockpit, two seater plane. (As a passenger.)
With a little more prompting I learned my little 5'1" grey-haired mama had been riding with a Christian motorcycle club associated with her church. She loved it! No, she didn't drive, but sat behind the driver. They all wore black leather with silver buttons and lots of fringe. She just want to fit in.
Mom is quite well known in our rural community and surprisingly everybody loves her. I say, "surprisingly" because, as I mentioned before she is a one-of-a-kind, strong-willed female, and a mother in eveny DNA corner of her determined body. She is still perfectly comfortable threatening me and all of creation with the disciplinary wooden spoon. Happily, most of us can finally out-run her.
By the way I discovered that perfect gift for her and every mother. Mom is the one who told me what it is. We have it with us day and night, even though it's priceless and precious. Everyone of us has an allotment of it and yet it can't be seen, held or saved. It is continuously passing through our fingers and when it's gone, so are we. We can't hang on to it, but we can throw it away. Shakespeare called it, "...an inaudible and noiseless foot."
Yes, it's , TIME, the invisible commodity our mother's want from us more than anything. If we are still so blessed as to have our mother's here, and it is possible, go spend a day of minutes with your mom.
Sometimes I write fiction...this isn't and my mom is everything I've related here...and lots more.
She passed on to be with her Lord 2 years ago at 94 years of age.