Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Writing (01/11/07)
TITLE: A Purpose to My Passion
By terri tiffany
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When I was in the fifth grade, I wrote my first and last poem. My mother had gone back to work fulltime that year and I missed her smiles when I returned home from school. Sometimes, mischief accompanied freedom and she might return after a long day to find the house a mess. She always forgave me and so one day I wrote down my feelings for her on a scrap of paper.
<i><center>Parents to you are very mean</center>
<center>You may think they’re far from keen</center>
<center>Do you think this day and night?</center>
<center>Or only when they’re in your sight?</center>
<center>My little children, don’t you know,</center>
<center>That they were like you long ago.</center>
<center>They had parents like you too,</center>
<center>And with them they were never through</center>
<center>They listened to them each and every day</center>
<center>Never wanting to go astray</center>
<center>They had to learn this as you know</center>
<center>So to you they could always show,</center>
<center>How they love and care for you</center>
<center>Oh my little children how I envy you.</i></center>
She cried when I gave it to her and then surprised me by folding it into a tiny square and stuffing it in her wallet. Now – a mother’s purse is sacred, so I never knew over the course of years whether or not she threw away that bit of sentiment. But years later, at my child’s first birthday party, my mother handed me a wrapped package.
“This one is for you.” I looked up in surprise and tore at the ribbon.
It was a copy of my poem. Through my tears, I cradled the gold frame now housing my thoughts forever in a calligrapher’s script. My childish words touched me as I read the sentiments written long ago and now so relevant to my own life.
Years passed before I started writing in earnest – actually submitting works and getting published. When I <i>was</i> ready, my husband designed an office for me with plenty of wall space. I dug through my memory box and unearthed the slightly tarnished frame with the forty year old poem and marveled how its message had endured through two generations.
It was then I knew how I should write. A writer’s words ought to move someone exactly like my poetry first moved my mother and then later me. When I wrote those verses, I wanted only to please my mother. Never did I imagine the lasting power of a child’s writing.
And so I look forward with great pleasure to the day when my simple words written for a moment’s absolution will touch again. I already have it planned how I will surprise<i> my</i> daughter on her child’s first birthday.
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