Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
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Columns
I had things to do, so many things. I had to write this column, finish a book proposal, edit two reviews and write another. The Easter Bunny required provisions and the daily tasks called -- the groceries, meals, homework, laundry. I also needed to hire a moving company, buy a house on the other side of the world, and figure out how to ship our cat across three continents. We're moving back to Canada in June; I've a lot to arrange, kitty included. I did none of these things. I skipped town.
Mother City Mama by Katherine Barrett

My daughter is twelve. Sometimes I wake at dawn, from a dream that she is gone, and my heart pounds for her. I remember being twelve. Getting so warm, chasing each other at recess, that we took off our coats. The girls took them off, hot from running. The boys took them off, I see now, so we couldn't touch their coat tails and make them it.
Birthing the Mother Writer by Cassie Premo Steele

Things have changed. A transcontinental move with school-aged children, now first and second graders, means new territory and new worry. We've scouted potential neighborhoods with schools in mind, bus routes, test scores, cafeteria menus, and extracurriculars. But here's the main difference: the boys know. Perhaps they don't remember our last move, but they are old enough to anticipate this one. And every forecast they contrive stirs both excitement and uncertainty.
Mother City Mama by Katherine J. Barrett

Creative Nonfiction
For thirty five years, my mother has continued to run. Now she lives in rural Western Massachusetts, and our winter phone conversations often include her accounts of running on snowy roads, undaunted by icy winds. Years before I began running, I listened with a mixture of admiration and puzzlement as she told me how getting out for a run on a cold, grim day made her feel like she'd triumphed over the weather.
Unwrapping the Gift by Sarah Marxer

Fiction
Caroline could barely hear her own words. (Had she said them?) The oxygen hissed up her nose through the plastic prongs. The pull of the Vicodin lured her toward sleep. Sam didn't look up from his Spirograph, but Caroline knew that that didn't mean he hadn't heard her.
Lullaby by Carolyn Roy Bornstein

Literary Reflections

Book recommendations -- See what our editors and columnists are reading now.
Now Reading: April 2012 and Now Reading: May 2012 by Rhena Tantisunthorn

Need some more Mother's Day reading?
Essential Reading by Rhena Tantisunthorn

Poetry
we met two days after her birthday
we planned it all for her
remembering what we had promised
carefully sitting around the table...
Daughters by Susan Morse

This is the woman who boiled the bones
for your broth, the one who scrubbed the guts
of fish from your arms, the salt of ocean
from your hands, the woman who presses
her face into your shoulder remembering
the talcum smell of your skin...
Mother-in-Law by Andrea Sarsfield-Fischer

Childhood, that sleepy season, hovered at the ceiling.
It fell like a silk net and we wore its colors,
wrestled soundlessly in the soft, rotting cave
where we hid from you,
handed death back and forth like a flashlight. ...
Long ago, Home by Lynn McGee

Mother has eyes that draw me in. Like a fish on a squiggly-wormed line, I cannot escape, do not think of escape. Mom, Mama, Mother, Dear, hold me, hug me, love me. ...
Mother's Day Love Poems by Kara Bachman

Profiles
Elizabeth Mosier's recent novella, The Playgroup (GemmaMedia, 2011), explores that intense time when the children are small, toys constantly litter the floor, and mothers -- especially playgroup mothers -- become central to each others' worlds.
An Interview with Elizabeth Mosier by Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser

Betty Jane Hegerat's most recent book, The Boy (Oolichan, 2011), weaves fiction, journalism, and memoir into a gripping tale of motherhood and murder. The Boy centers on Louise and her relationship to Danny, her stepson. Louise wants to love her role as stepmother and wants to love Danny too, but she can't shake the feeling that the boy is, and will always be, trouble.
An Interview with Betty Jane Hegerat by Katherine J. Barrett

Reviews
Kristina Riggle's third novel, explores the fecund, complicated morass of personal history and how our stories haunt us even as we try to leave them behind. Narrated in chapters that alternate points of view, Things We Didn't Say introduces Michael, a divorced dad with three school-aged children, Michael's younger, live-in fiancée Casey, and his ex-wife Mallory. As these six people encircle one another, we learn who they are, who they want to be, and the perilous gulf that lies between.
What Lies Beneath by Lindsay Mead


The Literary Mama Blog Editor searches for mama-centric news you can use — including information about publishing opportunities and literacy efforts; essays and writing prompts that motivate and inspire; and announcements about events, classes, and workshops. The current blog editors are Laura Roberts and Rudri Patel; read their bios here and here.


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