Sickly Svithing on Mother's Day


So I'm home sick on Mother's Day. Lady Steed left me with the baby so she could better enjoy sacrament meeting. Right now we are watching music videos. I know, I know. But we both love this one. We'll probably have watched it a dozen times by the time I finish this svithe.

Anyway, I don't usually do terribly matricentric posts on Mother's Day, but this year the time has come.

Last month as part of her daily poetry project, Darlene posted part of "The Lanyard" by Billy Collins. It struck me so deeply I made it part of my Mother's Day present to my own mother and I bought the book for Lady Steed.

Anyway, in respect for the same copyright laws Darlene aimed to repsect, I'm going to copy only the same portion she did. A link to the entire poem is at her blogpost linked to above.

I thank God for Mothers.

The Lanyard
Billy Collins

She gave me life and milk from her breasts,
and I gave her a lanyard.
She nursed me in many a sickroom,
lifted teaspoons of medicine to my lips,
set cold face-cloths on my forehead,
and then led me out into the airy light
and taught me to walk and swim,
and I, in turn, presented her with a lanyard.
Here are thousands of meals, she said,
and here is clothing and a good education.
And here is your lanyard, I replied,
which I made with a little help from a counselor.

Here is a breathing body and a beating heart,
strong legs, bones and teeth,
and two clear eyes to read the world, she whispered,
and here, I said, is the lanyard I made at camp.

last week's svithe


  1. Maybe you have svithe flu?

  2. I'm a big fan of that poem. I played an MP3 of Billy Collins reading it to my wife for Mother's day this year.

  3. .

    Nice touch. He's one poet who reads his poems well. (Not all do.)