Written by: Miss Wattle

THE PHOTOGRAPH The old black and white photo Sits on a shelf by the door It's one of my dear mother She's maybe sixteen, not a day more. A stunning young woman Just before she was married She's looking away, small smile on her face At what point did she become so old and so harried? What takes its toll on such a sweet, smooth visage? Perhaps a bad marriage and four kids to manage But it ne'er crushed her spirit nor bowed her inner strength She took what was dealt her and minimized the damage. Her kids were her life, through thick and through thin She loved and protected them, despite his dire anger One by one the kids left and escaped the hostility Then finally she left and escaped her own danger. Now all that is left Is the old photo on a shelf by the door Of a stunning young woman A small smile on her face, harried no more. © ELR 2013