NPM2022 Day 19: My Mom-in-Law Can Make Anything

Here’s today’s sticky note poem.

This one started out with my reading some Taylor Mali poems for an upcoming poem. This one broke my heart, and I decided to oppositify the first few lines. I’m telling you, just trying to pick an opposite word for every noun is such an adventure in language. That in itself would be a fun class activity!

The motors made out of spoons made me think of the fork fans my mom-in-law made once. She is a crafter, sewer, and quilter extraordinaire, and her talents don’t stop there. She is a military wife who raised eight children on her own for long stretches of time. She’s a woman who endured the loss of her father when she was very young and then the loss of her husband when she was just a young wife with two babies. And more recently, the loss of her husband of more than 50 years. She’s one of the most generous people I’ve ever met in my life.

I wrote this draft 1, but then I made some changes as I copied it over to the sticky note, figuring lots of kids might not know what a fork fan was (I sure didn’t!):

And here’s Mom Salas and my husband Randy in December of 2021. Randy’s father passed away last year, and I admire Mom Salas enormously for what she’s done throughout her life and how she’s handling things now. <3

Thanks for reading, and happy National Poetry Month! And if you ended up here by chance, fantastic! Here are a few links you might find helpful.

4 Responses

  1. Laura, your sticky note poem is simply lovely. In just a few words you have summed up mom’s life, loves and generous heart. Thank you so so much!

    1. Aw, thank YOU, Lori! For your kind words and for being the main support for Mom and Dad over the years and now for Mom. That is hard work. I know it’s rewarding, but still.

  2. Laura, what a heartfelt and loving tribute to your mother-in law! She is a strong woman. I feel your admiration and emotions in your poem. I love “turned hope into a family”, “scraps and wishes into doll clothes” and “and most given with love.” Thank you for showing your changes and process. Love the pic of Randy and his mom! Thank you for sharing.

  3. This is lovely. I’d love to see those fans someday. Opposite-ing is such an effective way of getting started sometimes!

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