This Poem was Submitted By: Karen Ragan On Date: 2004-05-17 18:04:47 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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The day my son married, I cried two teardrops... One fell upon the closed chapter of his childhood. My joy of being completely needed evaporated, as I realized another woman was now the center of his heart, and I must quietly take second place. The same little boy who confessed, "I love you so much  it hurts, mom" stood beside someone new, pledging to her undying love...beginning a new chapter of manhood, where  someone else would play the leading lady, as I watched, playing only a bit part compared to our first chapter.... As I watched adoration for each other light up their eyes,  a second tear trickled slowly down, glistening in the light of candles, burning in honor of passion and hope they held for each other and new life to be conceived of this loyalty. Though this salty tear traced the same path as the first... One tear held my sorrow, emptying wistful memories of our past. The second beheld their joy, also flowing from the core of my heart. I pledged my love for my son do all to preserve their love, never to hinder nor presume to know its path, but only to follow... quietly waiting for my cue from them, as they live out each scene. My dream today is to know this new leading lady as a daughter. Though my blood will never course through her veins, I hope  our hearts will intertwine and share this special love we both  hold for my son and her husband in the treasure of friendship; as we write this play of life together, none knowing final end. 

Copyright © May 2004 Karen Ragan

Additional Notes:
hi all. I haven't done much writing this year. Tragedy struck our family and I cared for my father-in-law (with bladder cancer) in my home during his last months. He passed in March and I've had many days of depression and searching--looking at my own life really. This has nothing to do with the subject of this poem, but this is the first piece I've written in many months. Just thought I'd explain to you who are familiar with my work why you haven't seen my work around. Actually, this piece is in honor of my daughter-in-law's birthday. Anyway, thanks for listening.

This Poem was Critiqued By: Sherri L Smith On Date: 2004-05-31 22:01:32
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Dear Karen, I feel your pain and your love as well, witht his wonderful poem about your son and new daughter in law. My son married last August and I cried for the same reasons, first of all, because he has only wanted to be married and have a family of his own. He inherited a daughter and now they are having one of their own. I saw the love that they shared for each other and rejoiced in it, but sorrowed too for the fact that I would not hold first place in his life any more. I am totally thankful for Amy, and think of her as my daughter the one that I never had. I have a wonderful relationship with my daughters in laws as well as Steve's daughter. I am happy about that. I hope that you will be blessed witht he kind of relationship I enjoy with all my "girls". Sherri

This Poem was Critiqued By: Wayne R. Leach On Date: 2004-05-30 17:10:14
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.37500
Karen, this is a beautifully crafted release of the emotions a mother must go through as her "baby" leaves for another woman. I enjoyed it immensely, even to the point of getting a little misty myself. You have adorned this piece with just the right amount of glowing imagery to enhance those emotions passed on to the reader. Beautiful job, and far be it for me to change it. My condolences, and I hope you will find happiness and peace in your future. wrl
This Poem was Critiqued By: Nancy Anne Korb On Date: 2004-05-28 22:18:41
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.28571
How familiar the pain of a mother seeing her son get married and the joy for the beginning of a new era for him and the ending of one for his mother. "a son is a son til he gets him a wife, a daughter's a daughter, for all of her life" old Irish saying and so true. Your voice is very clear here, as is your soul...this is a lovely piece. If I have to critiqe anything, it is that a tear cannot "behold" anything [The second (tear) beheld the joy]. Otherwise, the poem is beautiful, as is the wish for you and your daughter in law to become close in your common love for your son. Keep're really good.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Elaine Marie Phalen On Date: 2004-05-22 22:19:59
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Hi Karen, I wondered where you'd gone, and am so sorry for your loss. My mother is ill, also, and I'm steeling myself for what lies ahead. I think that in some ways, you've transmuted your grief into this lovely affirmation of the way life and family do continue. Perhaps by reflecting on what was, you have moved toward what will be. I can't possibly critique this in terms of suggesting revision! The heart has spoken and you are its messenger. That "closed chapter of his childhood" isn't actually gone, because any time you wish, you can reopen the book and look within. Your memories carry everything, don't they? I know mine do (my daughter got married last August, so I understand the feeling very well). In S2, you begin the theatrical metaphor, which is nicely sustained throughout the rest of the piece. I'm not sure your son would agree with your assessment of playing a "bit part", even though you aren't physically present in his daily routine as much, now. You are in everything he does and says, in the attitudes he holds, the skills he develops, the code by which he conducts his affairs. When he passes on this contribution to his own children in time, you will be in them, too. But you've moved from performer to playwright, helping with the unfolding script. I think that's a more satisfying role as the years pass. I just love that final stanza! The speaker admits she wants more than just a legal bond with this young woman who now shares her son's world. "Know as a daughter", indeed. My son-in-law is as much a son to me as if he'd been born from me. His Mom is my friend and so we share this gine young man between us. Same with my daughter; her mother-in-law had only boys and loves this new daughter. I believe that we don't lose, we only enlarge the circle. But there are those tears!! They are very real and your poem has expressed so clearly the ambivalence that every parent feels as the marriage takes place. "Never knowing final end" is a fitting way to close this. The script is being written continually, scene after scene. Actors arrive and depart; episodes begin and finish. But the play itself goes on. And remember, there's a "grand" in grandparent. That well may come next, and it sure sounds important in the overall narrative. I do like this, very much. It's filled with truth and love, beyond any uncertainties. May you find peace, joy and comfort in the months ahead. Great to have you back! Brenda
This Poem was Critiqued By: Gerard A Geiger On Date: 2004-05-20 13:24:21
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 1.00000
Dear Karen; A lovely heart searching poem explaining the angst associated with life's requirement for a Mother to share her love of her son with his chosen soulmate. Wonderfully done without self pity, expressing mature judgment and understanding, and ultimately sharing love between all in a growing extended family. You are fortunate to be so wise. Your daughter-in-law picked the right's clear she will have your support...Very enjoyable read Good to hear from you again, Karen Take care, Gerard
This Poem was Critiqued By: G. Donald Cribbs On Date: 2004-05-17 22:31:30
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.83333
Dear Karen, I'm pretty new here myself, so I haven't had the chance to see your other writing. Glad to see you've been able to find your way back here. I hope you are encouraged by other writers here at the link. I know I have been myself. My intention with reading and critiquing your poem is to offer constructive feeback so that you can take what you like and leave the rest (my mom always said that) and either challenge you to become the best writer you can be, or encourage you to do better. That said, I'll move on to the poem. I welcome your comments back so that I can better myself as a fellow poet and critiquer as well. An apt title to start things out. You are one who "tells it like it is." I respect that. In stanza one, you paint a picture of a woman who has to swallow being one uped by a younger woman. The difficulty lies in the fact that it's not your husband running off with a younger woman, its your son doing what sons do--they grow up and get married. Nicely done. In stanza two, we are at the wedding ceremony, sitting among the family members and friends. You've incorporated a few different ways of conveying your meaning with the stage and the actors, the ceremony itself, and the chapters and characters of a book. All of these work well together, and pinpoint different aspects of meaning. In stanza three we are faced with the facts. Love has happened here. You can see it clearly in the flickering candles and in their eyes. You know what this means. Your time is up. Your role has changed, your character has been rewritten. Not an easy thing to face after all the hard work and dedication you selflessly gave as his mother. In the fourth stanza, your decision a firm resolution, you nobly determine to take your cue from them, to let them dictate how this will play out, and allowing them space to move and grow in their new roles as spouses so they can get their footing before you know what that means for you and the time you will have with your son and new daughter in law. A big unknown. I feel like I'm right there in it. You've done a great job of walking us through the journey as a reader. I myself being a son, I can relate, but not in the same way. I appreciate knowing your perspective and seeing how you dealt with this challenge in your life. Thank you for taking the risk to share this with us. You are a strong woman for doing so. I am glad I had the chance to read it. Thanks very much. Warm regards, Don
This Poem was Critiqued By: arnie s WACHMAN On Date: 2004-05-17 20:14:26
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
I remember you vaguely. So, this is what my mother went through when I got married! My mother never really had the gift of conversing in feelings. You have set it out very well here. Yes, definitely a new chapter in your life, and as the saying goes..."and so it goes." You write that your blood will never be a part of your daughter's. Well in some way it will if they ever have children. Wonder if you ever thought of that? This is a heart warming piece and you opened yourself up for all to see. Your title is apt. Thanks for posting.
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