Friday, March 08, 2019

Poetry Friday -- A Tribute to the Women Who Made Me Who I Am




The women who made me who I am
     gave each other home perms
     led Cub Scout dens and Brownie Scout troops
     grew asparagus for the challenge of it
     ran the swimming pool and coached the swim team.

The women who made me who I am
     opened businesses
     drove tractors
     canned pickles
     read voraciously.

The women who made me who I am
     put meals on the table
     put kids to bed
     put petunias in the planter
     put family first.


©Mary Lee Hahn, 2019


Happy International Women's Day! This poem's for you, Harriet, Verta, Rae, Phyllis, Rita, Vonnie, Evelyn, Adrienne, Joy, Bonnie, Rose Mae, Faye, and all the others whose names have left my memory, but whose mark remains.

Catherine has the Poetry Friday Roundup at Reading to the Core.

Next week, Heidi (my juicy little universe) is inviting us to join her in sharing Climate Change poems for the worldwide School Strike for Climate.




18 comments:

  1. The women who made you who you are were practical, adventurous, curious, and giving. Beautiful tribute (and photo), Mary Lee.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your women sound a lot like my women, Mary Lee.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love this - especially the asparagus. Thank you! xo

    ReplyDelete
  4. Mary Lee, this is such a great list poem! Full of details and contrasts--love it. And it gives me such a sense of who you are, even if I didn't know you:>)

    ReplyDelete
  5. You were lucky to have them in your life, Mary Lee. I feel lucky too to have so many that came before. Beautiful poem of gratitude!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Reading about the women who have shaped us seems to have a common theme; in the ordinary things, women are great - and that is so empowering. I love your contrasting images each getting a nod - each so important!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wow, so good! I love all those different ways to be a woman!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love all the concrete particulars and how varied they are. I love the very different use of put in the last line. Thank yo for sharing them with us.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wonderful!! So many of the traits you listed ring true for me too.

    ReplyDelete
  10. omg...grew asparagus for the challenge of it...might be one of my favorite lines of all time. Putting family first in all those wonderful, diverse ways. This poem blesses me. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Great list poem, Mary Lee. I love all the specific details about the women in your life!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I like that you chose to focus on "the 'women' who made me who I am" and also the repetition of this line. Strong poem thanks Mary Lee!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I know you've shared it before, but I have to tell you how much I love this photo of your mother! Your poem is a perfect celebration of the everyday work women do to make us who we are. There mark is indelible!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wonderful! I was also struck by the asparagus line, the "put" repetition (I love how that word sounds like you've placed something solid on the table...), and the quiet, everyday work that these women did to sustain people and community.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Tuesday afternoon--my latest PF commenting ever. I'm owning it!

    I knew I recognized that face on the linkup...she's direct, friendly, ready for a laugh or an asparagus challenge, simple on the outside & complex on the inside. Your poem is as strong as all those women, that last stanza with the repeated "put" especially.I hadn't realized what a powerful word PUT is. (Maybe the hokey-pokey really is what it's all about...)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I love that driving tractors and canning pickles are paired in this poem, Mary Lee. Wonderful tribute!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Oh, this one just tugs at my heart! All of the names just made me think I was hearing them at a ball game for the all star line up. Lucky you!

    ReplyDelete

We welcome your contribution to the conversation!