Dear Amber. As you fly off to begin an exciting new venture, my heart flies with you. The title of this poem is true. You were brought into the world with one dollar and twenty five cents. I celebrate that now.
Yes, your birth changed my life, but the changes were in ways that are so good, I cannot even begin to describe the joy.
The God-like allusions in this poem are meant to be a contrast to the scared little girl I was in the beginning. I’m sure you know that, because you probably understand my poetry better than anyone else does.
Mothers tend to feel like they can move mountains. But I don’t take credit for any of your successes. You have earned them. You.
I am so proud to be known as the mother of Amber A. Yoder, filmmaker.
Four Quarters, Two Dimes & A Nickel
And a big eyed baby, looking up at me
like I’m God, not some snot nose girl
who just turned the dresser drawers
upside down, praying for payday,
willing to sell my soul twice
for something warm to fill
those neverending eyes.
Now the cold’s creeping through
the rattle crack glass and Good Lord, I’m
down-to-the-last-potato broke but know
blues won’t make my baby girl strong.
It’s time to get moving
what’s got to get done.
So, I leap over the chasm, swim the dead sea.
Wrestle angels, throw the bolt, stop the wind, catch the key.
Rearrange the universe, drop by drop.
Bend the nail, chew the whip, pull the hunting bow taut.
Rebuild the wall with a sword in one hand.
Swat away the locusts, hoe the worn land.
Grind the chaff, roll the stone, lick the flames, kiss the ring.
Plug up my ears when the pretty moon sings.
Sweat inside the furnace, lock the jaws, lick the sores.
Kill the four horsemen, find the scrolls.
I hold the world.
Now she’s so fine, so strong,
taller than me and looking down
a new paved road.
Someday, she’ll stop and wonder
how on earth a Mama did all that
with four quarters, two dimes,
and a sticky little nickel
in the bottom of a drawer.
Right now, this story is my song.
But I’ll sing it as I move.
There’s more to be done.
-Written by Amber’s Mama
This poem was first published in storySouth.