My three year old grandson insisted they FaceTime with me so I could tell him the poem ‘Little Orphan Annie‘, which is one of his favorites. My children loved that poem too and I read it to them so often that I soon knew it by heart and still recall it these many years later. He also really likes ‘The Dark House’...see a theme here? He likes vaguely scary things, with goblins and ghosts.
I’ve always loved poetry and can still recite some of my favorites, partially or verbatim. For instance: Trees, Disobedience,The Cremation of Sam MaGee, Father William, Casey at Bat, The owl and the Pussy Cat, The Highwayman, and Jabberwocky, to name just a few. It must be the rhyming that makes them stick so firmly in my mind. Reading poetry is also very soothing to me; again I attribute that to the rhyming.
My husband also loved poetry and went through a phase of writing some of his own. One year for his birthday I typed all his poems and put them in a binder. He loved that and when the grandchildren visited he’d take out his book of poems and read them out loud, to the delight of all. Somehow, in down sizing a few years ago and much to my dismay, this book was lost. Recently, my son who bought our home after my husband passed away, found the earlier hand written copies of his poems. He just sent all of us copies of a couple of them. How happy I am to know that some of these special poems have survived for the younger grandchildren to enjoy. Because of these poems ‘Snard‘ is a new word that has been added to their vocabulary. Though fictional, a Snard is a delightful little creature. And who would have guessed that one must call a watermelon a ‘pumpkin’ because ‘watermelon gives me a belly ache’.
in addition to this wonderful turn of events, I found tucked away in a box, a few additional stories and poems that my mother wrote years ago which I had never read. I spent the morning reading them and yes, crying over some of them. My mother was a prolific writer and she lives on in her writings, many of which were taken from personal experiences of her developmental years. Some time ago I typed all of them I could find and gave copies to my children and my brothers. Now they can look forward to some additional ones when I get motivated to type them. They are all written in longhand, and in some cases a little hard to dicipher, so this will be a chore albeit a pleasant one. It feels like my mother just keeps on giving us secret glimpses into her life and feelings although she has been gone for sixteen years.
There is nothing more powerful and long lasting than the written word. Especially when the author is someone you know and love. How blessed I’ve been to have people in my life who taught me the love of reading; and how extra blessed I’ve been to know people who love to write.