Friday, January 27, 2006

Buttercream Frosting & Flying Saucers

Dear Mamma,

It's your birthday and I'm writing you this little card (that I'll tuck beneath your butter cream frosted sheet cake) to let you know that everything was worth it--everything that you sacrificed and gave me was for a purpose. I love you for all your encouragement... and for the things that I've never told you...

I love your beautiful, slender fingers, your thick, messy hair. I love the way you would rock me to sleep when I was eight and too tall and too old to still be in your lap, smelling the sweet perfume of your neck. I love that we used to look for flying saucers at the base of the bay bridge, staring up into the cloudless night, praying for an errant light or sound. With the hatch back of your silver van raised high like the wins of a beetle, we'd eat our picnic dinner (chicken salad-stuffed tomatoes, 6 1/2 oz Coca-Colas, mocha brownies--remember?) and talk about spelling tests, my tennis game, Granddaddy. Finally, we'd make it around to life on other planets. "Really, could it be?" I'd ask.

I love all that is you and different than the other mothers. You're an earnest, energetic, kind little soul--Mamma, how did you get to be mine?

I clean the burnt pieces of roast chicken from the oven and think of you. I look out at the bleak branches of Central Park and think of the warm of our home down South, the comfort of our mountain house in the Carolinas. The happiness and simple pleasures of life are YOU, Mamma.

Happy birthday to the lady, mother and best friend that has made me who I am.

All my love,

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