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A Happy Mother's Day: An American Sonnet

Updated on May 12, 2012

Workshop for Writers: Persistent Editing Pays Off

As the last two lines of this poem state, I wrote the rough draft on Mother's Day, Sunday, May 8, 2011. A partial version was one of the first items I published on HubPages shortly after joining in June 2011. I did not then identify it as a sonnet, American or otherwise, because it was, in point of fact, not one.

The HubPages presentation received not one single reader comment, and readership statistics show convincingly that it was not a big hit, and indeed, was barely noticed, one of the worst performing of all my contributions to HubPages. As I said in another poem last year ("When Fay and I Got Married"),

The truth is paradoxical, my friend, and truly daunting:
if you're too fragile for this world, it soon will break you.
They have another world all set for you if you can't take it!
But you can long delay when you must "meet your Maker"
if you consult Him (or Her!) daily as your Friend and Teacher.

Thus it makes me doubly happy (dare I say "proud"?) to report that I persisted in editing this poem written to my own mother and all other unforgotten mothers, and it did "made the cut" after all, because it was included in my new book, American Sonnets and Other Poems (April 2012). This 56-page privately printed, self-published book contains 25 new poems and 12 workshop essays written between April 2011 and April 2012. (The Academy of American Poets in 1996 designated April as National Poetry Month.)

Much of this book stems from writing I first-drafted during the year on HubPages, to which I gave ample credit in the Acknowledgments and elsewhere. Here I wish to repeat my gratitude to HubPages and to all the readers, there and elsewhere, who responded to my work in the past year and became my friends.

Here now, on the occasion of Mother's Day 2012, I present a fresh copy of the poem as it appears in my new book. I hope you like it.

A Happy Mother's Day

From "Maxie" Havlick (and I'm sure you'll find no other)
to Jean (Russell) Havlick, his one and only mother,
and also every other unforgotten mother:

I’m hungry for your melodrama, melodrama mama dear.
You know suspense, anticipation, curiosity, and fear
can either help or harm a youngster’s growth when near is here.

To honor mother, children young or old enjoy her poorest stories told
to them, no matter whether she reads sad or glad, or weak or bold,
so long as it is mother’s voice so clear, each year, still possible to hear.

This sentiment inspired in me by dearest friends of mine
(and friends, indeed, they are to everything benign)
who also bear the scars and honored title "mother."

On Mother’s Day, on May the eighth, in year twenty-eleven;
at Villa Park, in Illinois, it might as well be heaven!

An American Sonnet
Sunday, May 8, 2011

Copyright © June 2012 by Max J. Havlick and Fay M. Havlick, 16 W. Vermont St., Villa Park, IL 60181-1938, all rights reserved. The book is Max J. Havlick, American Sonnets and Other Poems -- in a Workshop Setting for New Writers (Villa Park, Illinois: New World Community Enterprises, April 2012). While we look for a formal publisher, we have made copies available in a self-published, privately printed first edition with a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" format and blue paper cover for $20 postpaid in the U.S.A.


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