Putting Motherhood on the Front Page with Suzi Banks Baum


Spring, she is drunk on herself.
The spent magnolia blossoms
Fermenting in first-mown grass.
Fairy flowers toppled,
Dandelion yellows pepper asphalt,
Beheaded by a weed whacker named The Queen of Hearts.

There was never such a time as this to begin.
House sparrow nips delicately at
Dandelions going toward seed already,
Making neat piles of thready fluff for her nest.

But, there was never such a time as this
To stop.
To pardon winter’s patched up woes
And ponder the future of the almond crops,
To ponder Cleveland
While peering in to a tulip’s soul.

Suzi Banks Baum
May 9, 2013

Suzi and Mom 1993

My Mom loved poetry.
I don’t ever recall her writing it.
There are so many gifts I thank her for, not the least of which is a love of words.
Scrabble. Letters. Handwritten notes left in the pockets of borrowed sweaters.

I do love you so Mom.
Rest well.

Celebrating mothers this month on Laundry Line Divine means we are Putting Motherhood on the Front Page. All month I will be sharing guest blog posts from the Out of the Mouths of Babes blog series here on the front page. In this collection of writing, women who are artists, authors, dancers, filmmakers and quilters will be sharing their creative journeys. I am convinced that the stories these women share illuminate the territory of motherhood with a detail and expansiveness that is rarely found elsewhere.

I know very well that some of the readers of Laundry Line Divine don’t have children. For a myriad of complicated and intensely personal reasons, you don’t have kids.

But, you do mother in so many other ways.

Coleen Davidson’s post says it so well. Women, by nature, are ‘madres’ to others. It is in our female DNA to care for others. While I will never stand here and say that one choice or situation is better than another, since I am a mother, this is my perspective. I never, ever want what happens here on Laundry Line Divine to feel like a club, exclusive membership only. I know women who have become stepmothers at 45. I know women who have adopted at 43. I know women who are perfectly happy without children and get immense joy out of showering nieces and nephews with a standard of care and attention no mother could muster. I also know there are some great guys who read these posts. Thank you each! When I welcome the stories of mothers, I am welcoming the stories of all women who own their creative powers, whether you birth babies, books or business. Please let me know if you’d like to contribute to this series by writing me at suzi@suzibanksbaum.com.

You can take some of this goodness home with you.

An Anthology of Babes

Consider buying a copy of An Anthology of Babes: 36 Women Give Motherhood a Voice, which compiles some of the blog posts and writing from the live events I host for the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers called Out of the Mouths of Babes: An Evening of Mothers Reading to Others.

Here is where you can buy the book.

Today’s web wonder is not to be found here. It is outside. Please step out on to your terrace or your back porch or in to the woods and
enjoy the gifts of Mother Earth.
xo S

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Showing 4 comments
  • Becky

    Hugs! Becky XO

  • Jim Lawrence

    Lovely Suzi, thank you for sharing your heart so gracefully. And I’m intrigued to no end by the weedwhacker named Queen of Hearts.

    • Suzi

      Do you like that Jimmy? It came to me when I saw the road scattered with dandelion heads. Hope to see you writing someday soon! xo S

  • Lorrin Krouss

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful poem and the wedding picture of you and your Mom. How special it is for you to have so much talent, so much love to share with others and such wonderful memories.