Portrait of a Mother and Daughter
oil painting by Emile Munier
"You can run around the whole world,
and you'll still be you,"
said the wise old grandma.
But she was young. She had to run,
her heart ruled by her head.
She needed to make that journey Out
before she could make the journey In.
Off she went, with a bad-ass man,
cruelty glinting in his eyes,
a smirk at the woeful grandma,
holding the baby left behind.
In time, she returned, all spent and sore,
alone, and hurting in her heart.
There was a two year old girl
with bouncing black curls
sitting with her grandma by the fire.
The young woman wrapped her arms
around the child, rocking.
"Baby Girl," she crooned,
"Baby Girl. I will take care of you.
I will never leave you again."
And the wise old grandma knew
that, at last, her girl had learned
the true meaning of love.
At Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads, Susie has set us a timely challenge: to speak out against violence against women. I have been thinking of how often women are abused down the generations, girls watching their mothers' suffering, learning that what they perceive as "love" feels like pain. It takes a huge shift to break that pattern and come to understand that love shouldn't hurt.
I actually dreamed this scenario the other night. When I woke, I thought perhaps the baby girl in the dream was the young woman's inner child. Either way, it was a child who needed love, nurturing and never to be abandoned again.
Please do check out the links at Toads, where you will find other poets writing on this important topic.