It's quiet here, except for the birds outside the open window, singing, their songs echoing through the trees and hollows. Mr. Wren and the fledgeling are still sleeping. Soon I'll be on my way out the door, showered and dressed, to go to work, a bag of goodies and a go-cup full of steaming Cuban coffee in my hand.
But before I get to the office, I'll stop off at my mother's house, where she and the goofy old dog will be waiting.
I'm bringing her a dozen big, fresh, brown eggs from the hens and a bouquet of flowers from our garden: giant, butter-colored irises, a few newly opened roses, some sprigs of pink dogwood. We're making breakfast together this morning, and while neither of us gets to have it served to us in bed, it will be a good one, and we'll have some smiles to fuel us through the day.
Last year on Mother's Day my father was in the hospital, dying from a bump on the head that caused bleeding into his brain. This will be the first year in 50 mom has spent the holiday without him. He'd go out, early in the morning, and cut roses from the garden for her, as many as he could carry in without a basket. She'd have vases filled with them all over the house, and wide bowls to float the ones he'd cut too short. Roses for mom, each bloom of symbol of his love. Dad didn't restrict this behavior to Mother's Day. The only difference was the quantity.
I wish I could spend the whole day with her, but this mother has to work.
Happy Mother's Day to all you Moms out there. And a special, heartfelt wish to all the mothers with sons and daughters serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and other parts of the world. May they all come home safe and sound.