I am child of toboggan and of a family that played in snow

Dad chose our Connecticut house for the half acre yard,

its graded slope was perfect for tobogganing.

I am child of a mother who cut my snowsuit

from the warp and weft of my father’s WWII Marine uniform

Between her singer sewing machine fingers

magic happened.

She buttoned me up and wrapped a knitted red scarf

round and round my little bundled body

then, kissing each of my dinner-roll cheeks

she looked into my eyes and smiled.

I knew I was loved.

I am child of a family whose interlocked legs

made space for me at the front.

Tucked under the curling toboggan’s hood

nested in my sister’s lap within big brothers’ reach

I sucked and ducked gallons of snow dust

guided by parents’ voices: lean this way or lean that;

and the toboggan flew like a snow-Ferrari

until it tumbled at the bottom of the hill

dumping all of us

boots and mittens flailing

tears of laughter freezing on faces

my mother’s eyes shining, burning like a winter-hearth fire

reminding me Who I Am

before I forgot.

Decades of seasons and snow wove their tales

of forts and slushy meltdowns

until miles of death and years of living changed my view.

Today it grew cold and it snowed.

I grabbed my new yellow ergonomically designed snow shovel

and I worked all morning while flakes descended like long forgotten memories

until at last, I gazed with satisfaction at my newly cleared drive.

Exhaling clouds of frost, velvet roses feathered my cheeks with her warmth

I felt her hands bundling me up

and I saw her eyes gazing into mine

And I knew once more the love that glows against winter and cold

And I remembered

This is Who I Am.






Filed under Poetry, Uncategorized

29 responses to “Beloved

  1. Rich

    This I can relate to and understand.

  2. This is beautiful. I loved it.

  3. This left me smiling. Such wonderous and wonderful memories, all wrapped inside the glow of love.

  4. ManicDdaily

    So absolutely lovely! Lucky you, and lucky parents to have a child (adult) who can write about it all so beautifully. K.

  5. We’ve just got our first snowstorm this winter here in Connecticut and I’m looking forward to shoveling when it’s over. Lovely memories you shared here, and I love the cute little dumpling in the toboggan!

  6. I was talking to a couple of people around my own age recently.. late 30s and we were reminiscing about when we were kids and how it seems to have changed.. we used to be always outside in the snow (as you’ve described wonderfully), in the mud, in water, in the streets, in the garden, next to the stream, in the farmer’s field (got into trouble on that one).. and I’m told these days kids are more interested in computer games, TV, Wii, Xboxes, nintendos, iphones, ipads, I don’t know what.. I don’t get it.. can’t do without being outside getting fresh air and exercise.. or maybe too much pressure is on kids these days to perform in exams etc.. perhaps we were the golden age.. perhaps we were lucky..

  7. beautiful, so beautiful photo and words

  8. Oh, this is beautiful.

    Though we in India do not experience snow, you have rendered the scene here so well, I can see it happening. You must have had wonderful time as children playing in snow.

  9. It was written beautifully. It’s just too bad that I never got to experience snow. Is it really that wonderful?

  10. This brings such a lot of warmth to a cold wintry morning. Thanks for sharing your memories.

  11. This makes me wish I enjoyed the snow more than I do! What a great photo! I love the phrase “dinner roll cheeks!”

  12. love the power of a parent’s love and the sense of being connected…lovely

  13. I love the tale you’ve told. Love the “dinner-roll cheeks.”

  14. This is an absolutely lovely poem. You are very blessed. 🙂

  15. Beautiful memories…I too remember sled rides when you and those dinner roll cheeks

  16. Wow. Oh wow. This is wonderful on so many levels. I grew up in Mississippi so my childhood memories are shoeless. I envy your memoriies.


  17. I wish I were that writer to see such a site. it’s also sad for nature to have such a sign.

  18. jmchri13

    Flawless (at least in my view).

  19. Merryn

    In tears as I got half way through and to the end. One of the many things that struck me was that I am leaving my mark right now as a mother. At times I wonder how on earth God, in His wisdom, could have chosen me to be E’s mum with all my failings… and yet, your post reminded me of the power of a mother’s love. And it’s the simple things we cherish the most. Sometimes I worry that E will miss out on so much because we haven’t got the finances. Yet I was reminded by this post, of the priceless memories created by a family that loves and supports each other. It’s the relationships that count.

    • Now you are seeing through God’s eyes – seeing clearly, that only ONE thing matters – and that is LOVE. Well done, dear Merryn. Your broken heart is shining beautifully, each one of the pieces more capable of reflecting in more directions, touching more other-broken hearts. Be grateful for now. You have loved and you are loved. This is good. This is the miracle of life.

      • Merryn

        It seems to be the theme from what I am reading on blog posts tonight. I love how God does that! Still crying – but in a good way – tears of gratefulness. Grateful that God has seen me and knows my burden. My wondering how I can move forward consistently, despite hurdles both within and without.

  20. Merryn

    Reblogged this on When You Walk Through The Waters and commented:
    Moved to tears as I read this tonight. Thankyou “Broken Pen Writer” for leading me to this post. I had to share it with you all…

  21. What a beautiful way to share your memories!
    I followed you till the end! I always know a masterpiece when it carries me to the last word wanting more.

  22. I love this. Thank you for the wonderful reminder that we are leaving an imprint right now, today, on our children for tomorrow. I hope my children have such precious, love-filled memories of me when they grow up and are able to share with their loved ones… 🙂

    • Something tells me they already do, and after reading your blog, I can see they will have many more coming. It’s the simple things we remember – that smiling eye contact, that hug – the one that lasted longer than one minute and held no words, that hand on the shoulder and the soft voice saying, I love how you do this. Even sing to your dog, look her/him in the eyes and sing “you are so beautiful to me, can’t you see? You are so beautiful to me.” They love it.

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