the mother files (part 1) – from “the book of sins”

May 2, 2007

it was tall

that tree that i so loved

in the garden of my youth

that garden, your garden

where i found the nests of birds

as a child

climbing up and up

peering over with eager

eyes and hands

those helpless babies

with open mouths

i fed worms – found in

the soil next to

the swing

you brought from the house

in taiping –

it was white then

but now silver as is the colour

of your hair, as it is now

grown back in silvery

sprigs, pine-like

delicate, like glass

fibres, framing your face

exposing bone, vein, sinew

as the cancer eats you

you have become a child again

like the birds i once fed

i feed you now, spoonful by

watery spoonful

like you once fed me

and like the birds

i know you will take flight

please –

fly now, with your arms

outstretched

like those birds

that once lived

in your garden.

(in memory of jane chauly 1940-2007)

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7 Responses to “the mother files (part 1) – from “the book of sins””

  1. Kenny Mah Says:

    Dear Bernice,
    This is such a tender, delicate poem. I didn’t manage to make it to your reading at No Black Tie but saw a video of it on YouTube (via Nic Wong, I believe).

    A very touching reading. I don’t really know what to say, I’m not good with words, except that this moved me, is all.

    And welcome to the blogosphere! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. bernicechauly Says:

    hi there
    thanks! look forward to seeing you read again too..
    am still trying to navigate my way around blog-land

    stay posted!

  3. bernicechauly Says:

    hi there
    cant seem to figure out to add you guys to my blogroll – could you help?


  4. Hi Bernice, not sure how WordPress works, but you can check out the instructions linked below:
    Managing Links – Add Links
    Hope this helps.
    Btw, I remembered;a few people were moved to tears when you read this at no black tie not too long ago

  5. Kenny Mah Says:

    Dear Bernice,

    Hope this helps:

    1. When you are at your Dashboard page, click on Blogroll on the main menu bar.

    2. This brings up the Blogroll page.

    3. The secondary menu bar lists the following: Manage Blogroll / Add Link / Import Links

    4. Click on Add Link.

    5. This brings you to the Add Link page.

    6. You can add us as follows, e.g.
    Name: Kenny Mah ยป Life for Beginners
    Address: http://kennymah.wordpress.com/
    Description: Kenny Mah’s blog

    (I usually ignore the Description though, it’s the first two fields that are essential.)

  6. Chet Says:

    “i feed you now, spoonful by
    watery spoonful”

    Bernice – I can identify with the above. My mother suffers from dementia and I feed her sometimes when I visit her at the nursing home.

    Your words are very powerful. Thanks for sharing.

  7. bernicechauly Says:

    thank you all for your comments. it means so much. am trying to get this second collection out soon. am sooo busy at the moment but will try update as much new work as possible…thanks again and please keep reading ๐Ÿ™‚


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