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Sometimes a Son
Janice Townley Moore





Sometimes a son
will surprise you   come to sit
on the side of your bed
where you lie with a broken leg
everyone else seems to have forgotten
He will balance three pieces
of grape smeared toast
on a too small plate   drink orange juice
from your best crystal   You don’t mind
this particular morning   the first sun
flashing off the leaves outside your window
He will tell you his funniest stories
fragments of toast   crumbling
onto the sheets   You will not brush them away
Your son will tell you these things
you’ve heard before
They will seem new now   as beside you he
shakes your whole bed with his laughter

From Teaching the Robins (Finishing Line Press, 2005).
This poem also appeared in The Tie That Binds (Papier-Mache Press).
Used here with the author’s permission.


A native of Atlanta, Janice Townley Moore now enjoys the best of two worlds, teaching English classes at Young Harris College in north Georgia and living just across the state line in Hayesville, North Carolina.  She says one good reason not to retire is the gorgeous mountain scenery she passes each day on the way to and from work.  Janice has, for many years, been the facilitator of a monthly poetry critique group for the North Carolina Writers Network.



Post New Comment:
I loved this poem when I first read it in Janice's book. I have no son, but this reminded me of my brother and mother.
Posted 05/08/2011 07:30 PM
Joe Sottile:
Excellent poem! Sometimes the least sentimental child does the most sentimental thing.
Posted 05/07/2011 12:02 PM
My son's affection for me often surprises me. Don't know why, since I am crazy about him. But when he comes to comfort me in times of trouble, I gratefully accept his kindnesses and feel a mother's pride for having helped him become a compassionate man. I see through this poem I am not alone in feeling this way.
Posted 05/07/2011 08:37 AM
nancy scott:
I have three sons and I know exactly which son you are telling us about
Posted 05/07/2011 06:30 AM
Julianne Carlile:
Very enjoyable poem.
Posted 05/07/2011 06:10 AM

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