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My Mother Wore Squash Blossoms in Her Hair
Virginia Shreve


Hit me over the head with a shovel,
my mother told my brother,
if I get too old and my mind elopes with the moon
and howls
and howls

If I am stuck in stutter-step-stutter,
my mind stubbed in just stutter,
Hit me over the head with a shovel
and leave me snug among the zucchini.

No one will look for me there.

In August, neighbors cower
behind their doors, fearful
of the vegetable albatross
left in bursting sacks on porches,
afraid they will have to learn
how to make bread or birdhouses.

Hit me over the head with a shovel,
my mother told my brother,
and tuck me snug among the zucchini.
You’ll make a clean getaway

and so



© by Virginia Shreve.
Used here with the author's permission.

Virginia Shreve, who once penned a catalogue devoted solely to corrugated office products, now resides in the small river town of Collinsville, Connecticut, with a husband and dogs, none well-trained, but all good-natured. For years, she wrote and edited numerous regional newsletters, much dog humor, and her poems have appeared in various journals and anthologies. Virginia, named Connecticut's Beat Poet Laureate for 2020-2022, believes there can hardly be too much chocolate. Or champagne.




Post New Comment:
Fun, and funny!
Posted 08/18/2022 02:52 PM
Wilda Morris:
What a fun poem, Virginia. Your mother is welcome to leave a bag of zucchini on my porch. I used to grow it, but my garden is infected with squash bugs I haven't been able to get rid of.
Posted 08/18/2022 01:22 PM
Darrell Arnold:
A joke here in Mormon country is that fall is the time of year when you have to be sure to lock your car whenever you leave it. If you don't, someone will come along and stuff it full of sacks of home-grown vegetables.
Posted 08/18/2022 12:23 PM
Darrell Arnold:
I think Virginia's mom was brassy and sassy, and I think Virginia might have inherited a touch of it. This poem is top shelf.
Posted 08/18/2022 12:21 PM
Lori Levy:
Love this.
Posted 08/18/2022 11:39 AM
Sharon Waller Knutson:
This poem is delightful with unique metaphors, alliteration and imagery. Favorites: "my mind elopes with the moon and howls and howls and howls" and "stuck in stutter-step-stutter."
Posted 08/18/2022 10:53 AM
I have made both bread and birdhouses.
Posted 08/18/2022 09:10 AM
What marvelous fun! . . . / and so / will / I. //
Posted 08/18/2022 09:07 AM
Absolutely on spot and fun! Shreve's lighthearted poem reminds me of similar sentiments expressed by my forebearers.
Posted 08/18/2022 08:55 AM
I'm down with "hardly too much chocolate," Virginia. Intriguing poem . . . that shovel had to hurt!! Great title.
Posted 08/18/2022 08:52 AM
Cathy’s Sister:
Posted 08/18/2022 08:46 AM
Virginia, I love this! What to do with all that zucchini!?
Posted 08/18/2022 07:40 AM

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