October 25 – Hand Woven

by Khadijah

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Been thinking a lot about my mother lately, hard to believe she’s been gone so many years. It seems like yesterday, last week, a month ago at most I midnight called her knowing she would be awake, playing solitaire at the kitchen table we spent so many hours eating, laughing, talking around. Can it really be nineteen years since I last heard her voice, me truly still a child despite having a child of my own, thinking she would be there for me forever- no not forever, but for a very long time and then-

she wasn’t.

In a split second lives change, people come and go, stand tall and fold, circumstances turn upside down so you can hardly recognize them anymore except maybe with the feeling of a vision almost grasped but not quite, deja vu but really, when you were there the mountains actually reached towards the sky but now you see only their reflection in a clear blue mountain lake.

Even now I reach for the phone to call her, talk about days and dreams and how did you do this help me figure it out so I don’t fall down again? For my mama, I do miss her, mash’Allaah.

Buried 1

Hand Woven

She was there when he was born

Hot blood gushing amidst tears and silence

Thankfully not hers.

No platitudes or empty prayers,

Simply support and a hand held tight.

Her life was built on courage

Dreams spilling from hurt and shame

Hers to hold alone…

Strength of spirit and hope

Bound with doubt of self.

I was late life born from late love

Child running through grown up lands

Fire to her cool calm…

Striving, spinning dreams

From photos creased with wear.

“Say, um…mom died…”

Words crackle through stormy night

Dad cried…

After first sorrow, I searched

For her in me.

I hear her whisper now as

Memories slip through soft shadows

My dreams and hers…

Braided, woven tight

Hands upon my heart.

Khadijah is still trying to adjust to life in the States after almost ten years in Yemen. She is a writer, translator, teacher, herbalist, fiber artist, and homeschooling mother to her eight children. She blogs at Yemeni Journey and Wide Earth.


6 responses to “October 25 – Hand Woven

  1. Such a beautiful tribute to your mother, Khadijah. She must have been a very special woman. Hugs, my friend.

  2. Wow!! Made me think of my mother, long gone, but always remembered,especially when I cook. The only pumpkin pie my grandson will eat (and he loves it) is my mother’s recipe.

  3. Lovely tribute…..I just celebrated my Mom’s 100th birthday and realize how fortunate I have been to share family stories, memories of her awesome cooking for a farm family. Just this week I received a typewritten letter from her. No spelling or typing errors.

  4. When my mother died, the priest at her funeral sang a beautiful song that ended with, “When you lose your mother, you lose the very best.” I’ve often thought how true that is. My Mom died in 1992 and I still find myself wanting to pick up the phone and talk to her. Your Mom must have been a special person to raise a daughter as beautiful as you.

  5. So many reminders, Khadijah-I still pick up the phone to share my day with
    my mother…Dusk of so many days the sun set with me on my deck
    sharing it across the miles with her. Sigh…It never gets any easier.

  6. My mom died in 1985 and I miss her still. On my next birthday I will be the same age she was when she died. It’s impossible for me to imagine her as being older than fifty-five and I wonder sometimes how magical it would be if I could somehow chat with her as a contemporary today.

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