“Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
~Mathew 5, KJV

Their Behest

(I wrote this poem for my beautiful sister Jenny: loving mother, courageous abuse survivor, and BFF)

I have a handful of words for you
Few, and potent
Let me unfold them before you:
“Sister, daughter, wife” and “mother”

That which every parched heart longs to hear
These names are the rain in our sky
Are they sweet and soft in every language?
In Spring, at their behest are bright berries brought to light
In the east as in the west?
Are they venerated as much as they should be?
As they are charitable, are they also spared by God or man much trouble, pain, sorrow or fear from burden?

Are they the sweetest, softest words to whisper?
“Sister, daughter, wife” and “mother”
In the tears of love and sorrow is hid the salt of the earth
In the sweat of her diligent labor and worry lay its savor

Therewith the children’s eyes were made
and with her coaxing, opened
and with her guidance, enlightened

and with her care, protected
and with her prayers, granted vision
and in her presence, brightened

A handful of notes the high larks warble:
“Sister, daughter, wife” and “mother”