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Monday, August 13, 2012

Those Mountain Women

My Great-Granny, Grandmother, and the four oldest
girls in the family...my mom is the littlest one trying
to hide behind her sister.


I come from a line
Of strong mountain women,
Rugged as the terrain they called home.
Great-Granny and her life steeped in grief,
Burying babies and a husband taken by typhoid,
Looking so tiny and frail
But tough enough to carry on.
And then Grandma,
Difficult times made more desperate
When abandoned to raise six children alone.
They wasted no energy on complaints and blame;
Understanding the immensity of their burdens,
They persevered,
Driven by necessity and fierce love.
As years have passed,

More generations of daughters
Have scattered across the country,
Feet planted on the rolling prairie,
In the blazing Texas heat,
Under endless Colorado skies,
With burdens of their own to bear
But with the same fierce love of family,
A part of their hearts
Still rooted back in West Virginia,
Still channeling the strength
Of those mountain women.

~~~~ This poem was written in response to a challenge from Imaginary Garden with Real Toads asking us to give voice to an ancestor.  With as long past as that particular challenge is, I've linked it with their Open Link Monday.

10 comments:

Susan said...

I totally enjoyed this celebration of the strong women in your family and their fierce love!

Heaven said...

I marvel at your lineage, the line of strong mountain women ~ Despite the grief and burden, there is same deep love of family ~

And thanks for sharing the vintage picture ~

Mary said...

You definitely can be proud of this mountain woman heritage. You come from strong stock!!

myheartslovesongs.com said...

a wonderful tribute to the women who came before and their legacy, Mary.

vivinfrance said...

What a wonderful genetic heritage you have.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I love this poem, the history behind it, and the wonderful old photo of times when women did what must be done, in the most difficult of circumstances. Strong stock!

Peggy said...

I enjoyed the story in this and the photo. (What a LOT of hair that one kid has!) I have a similar family photo of my grandmother and her mother and the children in the hill country of Mississippi. It would be fun to write about them too.

Margaret said...

They wasted no energy on complaints and blame;

This is a wonderful poem and I just adore it! I'd love, just love for more poems, details (if you know them) about these women!

sreeja harikrishnan said...

Woww.....the poem and the thoughts both are inspiring.....

Kay L. Davies said...

Amazing women. Burying babies and a husband... abandoned with six children... and we (perhaps not you, but I) complain about trivial things.
Amazing poem, Mary.
K