At My Mother’s Feet

By Deborah Ugoiwa

The strongest memory I have of my mother are my shoulders knocking between her thighs as she struggles to braid my hair.
I spent a lot of time at my mother’s feet – Watching, listening, soaking up all the knowledge that had seeped into her aged skin.
I watched as her eyes would light up when she talked about the things she enjoyed,
I watched as she tried to hide her tears when we would watch a sad movie,
I would watch her give generously without reward,
I would watch as her lined fingers fiercely poured her love into the food she made,
I would watch as the glittering gold on her fingers weighed them down.

In times like those, my mother would resign into her self, into her duty, like a soldier coming to terms with their necessary death.
I knew then that I was shut out, left to fester in my own anger.
My mother is a fierce woman, the strength to last a lifetime.
She is a flawed creature, a terrible beauty.
I did not know that world, but I knew my mother’s feet.
I see so much of myself in my mother, and it is her wish that I become better.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *