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Reflections on a Poem My Mother Wrote

Updated on March 21, 2014

My mother was a great woman. An excellent mother, and very skilled with just about every form of art I've seen her put her hands on. Be it writing, painting, various crafting projects, or even just her way with words. She had a very powerful sense to her, despite being sick in many ways through the 20 years of life I had shared with her.

She fell ill with cancer for the first time, almost 20 years ago. The doctors had removed it from the inside of her thigh surgically. They didn't catch the tumor in time, it was too big. It metastasized. The cancer seeded out into her body and lay dormant for many years. After her first brush with cancer, during the years of agonizing treatment and radiation therapy, she wrote a poem.

Things to Live For

"Things to live for, there are so many;

Reasons to accept death, there aren't any.

When facing death, knocking at my door;

I think, and remember things to live for.

My child's smile, and embracing hug,

The 'I love you,' and little shirt tug.

The surprise gifts they buy me, for being here,

On mother's day, and throughout the year.

For the little art treasures they made in school,

To the complaining they do, after breaking a rule.

Their eyes full of tears, as they cry 'Oh, mom!'

The dresses I made for the dance, and the prom.

For the chuckles and giggles through the teen years;

My tears at their wedding as every one cheers.

For grandchildren's faces that light with delight,

As I give them Pez ghosts on Halloween night.

For these things, I'm grateful, and much more;

Cancer won't beat me; 'I have things to live for'"

-Jean M. Colfax

Almost ten years after this poem was written, on December 30th, 2006, she passed away. She passed peacefully in the very living room I am writing from, and I like to believe she is still with us, protecting and watching over us.

She was the strongest woman I could even begin to imagine, having held on and fought to stay with us for so many years. She always joked she was going to wait to watch all her kids grow up and make something of themselves. She left this world mere months after I graduated basic training and became a soldier in the U.S. Army. I am the youngest of her children, and the last to start a life. I guess she wasn't joking, after all.

I really hope you enjoyed her poem today, I felt it was worthy of sharing with my friends here on HubPages. Thanks for reading!


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    • shara63 profile image


      6 years ago from Delhi

      amazing, she was really great ! My salutes to your Mom....I'm sure she is her poem and in her words....that relates to all mothers of the world ....she gave the message to the world that it is the mother who always thinks for the wefare of her children and even on the death bed yearnes for life for sake of her children only !

      wonderful hub ..God Bless you!

    • profile image

      I miss her so much. 

      7 years ago

      She made every child that had gods good graces to meet her feel loved nd cherished. No matter what family they came from she welcomed them into her with open arms and never let them go. To a great woman, Jean Colfax, one of kind daughter, mother, wife, friend.

    • tehgyb profile imageAUTHOR

      Don Colfax 

      7 years ago from Easton, Pennsylvania

      Aww thanks frogyfish, that means a lot =)

    • frogyfish profile image


      7 years ago from Central United States of America

      Your Mother's beautiful poem speaks of a special love and dedication not only to her children, but to Life! Thank you for your honor of her.

      Additionally, please accept my gratitude and thanks to you for your military service to our country, for freedom!


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