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Thankful for Four O'clocks

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My mother lived and died in her flower garden.  Having missed her for 34 years, I was surprised when a series of rain storms revived the Four O'Clocks she loved so much.  Their blooms open as if by magic each day at four o'clock.



The rain that seemed to wash my hopes away
Left an amazing gift for me to find
Beyond the puddles that remained behind
New signs of life revived one summer day

I had not planted anything at all
'Twas Mom who wanted me to find this prize
Her efforts surely took me by surprise
Three decades passed; her smile I can’t recall

But in the yard where she drew her last breath
A bed of Four O’Clocks awoke one day
It was as if my Mom were there to say
“My love for you survived beyond my death”




*Written November 7, 2018
“Thankful Poetry Contest” hosted by Tania Kitchin

Copyright © | Year Posted 2018




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Date: 1/11/2019 11:39:00 PM
Congratulations on your win. An incredible gemstone of a poem. Heartfelt and beautiful. A fav for me. :)
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Date: 12/10/2018 9:03:00 AM
Carolyn, I knew this poem was a winner the first time I read it, congratulations on your awesome win ~
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Date: 12/7/2018 6:30:00 PM
A heartfelt write Carolyn..Congrats on your win.
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Date: 12/7/2018 5:22:00 PM
Dropping back with my congratulations on your win Carolyn, a very worthy trophy winner:-) hugs Jan xx
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Date: 12/7/2018 2:33:00 PM
I enjoyed this the first time round and again re-reading it in the winners' list. Congratulations, Carolyn. I too have a special bush in the garden grown from fuschia cuttings from my Nan's cottage.
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Date: 12/7/2018 1:25:00 PM
Very consoling thoughts considering the fragility of life. Very heartwarming. Thank you.
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Date: 12/7/2018 11:32:00 AM
What a warm heartfelt write Carolyn, a very deserving win, congratulations...
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Date: 12/7/2018 2:27:00 AM
Congratulations on this winning poem - loved reading it. All the best ... CayCay
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Date: 12/7/2018 1:21:00 AM
Beautiful Carolyn! A defiant burst of life and love. Congratulations on your trophy win.
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Date: 12/6/2018 8:42:00 PM
An excellent poem..such a touching theme
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Date: 12/6/2018 8:15:00 PM
I absolutely loved your poem and the heartfelt tribute to your Mom, congratulations on your first place win!
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 12/7/2018 9:45:00 AM
Thanks so much, Tania. I love seeing those four o'clocks, which are still blooming here in Florida. They will fade after the first frost, but will return in spring.
Date: 12/5/2018 5:20:00 PM
Excellent entry ..Reads like a good contender for the contest. Way to go. Thanks for the visit to my page. I have planted over the past few years several times something called Lunar Flower. It's like a morning glory but it blooms at night. I enjoy seeing it if I get up early in the morning before the sun brings a closing of the blossoms and sometimes I will go out at night right about dark so that I can see. it. Sara
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Date: 11/28/2018 12:59:00 AM
As only you can do...deep from the heart, allowing the reader to share the ache, reminds me of your poems about your Father, almost too hard to re-visit....be well, jmg
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/28/2018 10:21:00 AM
It's always a combination of joy and pain when we write about lost loved ones, Jim. I became active on Soup right after my father died, so there were many poems written for him. Mom's been gone a long time. Seeing these flowers was such a surprise.
Date: 11/24/2018 11:14:00 AM
Carolyn, oh this is so lovely, my mother also loved her garden and four-o-clocks were one of her favorite too. Your poem touched me deeply, you are such a fantastic write, you put me in awe, best of luck in the contest, but already a winner to me and a FAV ~
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Date: 11/18/2018 1:37:00 PM
Those flowers are as beautiful as your poem, Carolyn. Over here they grow wild, though some people keep them 'domesticated' in their gardens. This would have been ideal for a recent Enclosed Rhyme contest. ~ Love // paul
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/19/2018 9:49:00 PM
Thanks, Paul. It was fun to write in the enclosed rhyme form.
Date: 11/13/2018 1:09:00 PM
This poem brought tear to my eyes Carolyn. The departed do indeed leave us gifts to remember them. A lovely tribute to your dear mom. I loved it! : )
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/19/2018 9:52:00 PM
I just know she was reaching out to me through these flowers, Connie. I've missed her so much for most of my life.
Date: 11/10/2018 7:57:00 PM
Such a poignant reminder of Mom, who never ever really leaves us. So happy for you that this has graced your life. Best wishes, Gershon
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Date: 11/10/2018 5:01:00 PM
A lovely verse Carolyn, beautiful tribute to your mother. Tom.
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Date: 11/10/2018 8:11:00 AM
Carolyn.. your moving tribute held me in a deep and philosophical muse. Your words transcend time and make one focus on the true essence of life.. Love!
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Date: 11/10/2018 8:09:00 AM
I am feeling this, I'm so touched - though sad if you really don't remember her smile. This is very personal and wonderful and wonderfully personal - the feeling you got when you saw the flowers. I'm sure this is a winner, the strength of emotion should carry it first across the line. Poetry hugs ... CayCay
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/10/2018 2:47:00 PM
I think, perhaps, the lawn had been mowed over this area for a long time. Still, it surprised me to see flowers spring from decades old seeds. Thanks for your lovely comments, CayCay. I'll visit your page.
Date: 11/9/2018 11:20:00 PM
Never heard of them either, cute! Beautiful tribute to your Mother, reminds me of Wordsworth's countryside or landscape poems, well written. Are they climbing Jacobs Ladder? :-)
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/10/2018 2:52:00 PM
Thanks for your sweet comments, John. I'm a fan of Wordsworth. These flowers spray evenly across the ground, no resemblance to ladders.
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John Dickinson
Date: 11/9/2018 11:24:00 PM
Date: 11/9/2018 3:43:00 PM
haven't heard of four o'clocks but this was a lovely poem - love it x
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/9/2018 5:20:00 PM
Thanks, Jack. Mirabilis jalapa is the technical name, but everyone calls them Four O'clocks. It's just the time of day when they bloom.
Date: 11/9/2018 1:17:00 PM
- I have never heard this name of these flowers ... (right now I do not remember what they are called in Norwegian :) - A beautiful memory of your mother ... a deep touching poem, Carolyn - I wish you a wonderful weekend :) - hugs & <3 // Anne-Lise :)
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Carolyn Devonshire
Date: 11/9/2018 5:19:00 PM
Thanks for spreading some Sunshine my way. Hugs, Carolyn
Date: 11/9/2018 9:11:00 AM
Hi Carolyn, what a beautiful write you have put before us. I wish you all the best in this contest with this winning poem. It touches the heart so gently as one does read each line. You write from the heart, painting such a beautiful canvas. Excellent , poetry that kisses the emotions. Have a wonderful Friday. Hugs....Mike. XX
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Date: 11/9/2018 8:36:00 AM
What a beautiful, moving poem, Carolyn! I love it. Janice
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