Newly Published Poem

I wrote this poem for my mother in law Christina McDonagh nee Brown shortly after she died in 2003 aged 82 years. She was an inspiration not just to me but to all her 10 children and was known throughout the community in North London where she lived as a good and kind woman. She had led a hard life being a scullery maid “in service” in her youth in Scotland and she never had a great deal of money throughout her life but taught me the value of things that money cannot buy. Family, love and friendship. She was a marvellous woman, one of the unsung heroes who never complain but do the best they can with what they are given and the hand they are dealt. She had a profound impact on me and certainly was prominent in shaping who I am today.

Her favourite tune was “Time to say Goodbye” which was played at her funeral and even now nearly 10 years later reduces me to tears.

 I subsequently entered it for a national poetry competition and although it never won it was selected for publication in a new anthology of poems called “Uplifting Moments” published by United Press Ltd this year.

“Mrs Mac”

Mrs Mac

I never knew how much I loved you,

Until you’d gone.

Christina, Chrissy, my Mrs Mac.

My surrogate mother ,who never chastised,never held back,

Always laughed, never criticised.

So many things I never said,

And too late to say,

When I came to say goodbye.

You asleep in your bed of dreams,

Drifting gently heavenwards,

Where else?

Leaving all sloth and care behind,

And now it seems, what was left unsaid,

Is spoken aloud , a soft gentle sound,

In that beautiful Scottish burr,

Of lochs and glens and tatty scones,

As you say to me,

Yes, of course I loved you

My son.

Tod O’Brien 2003

4 Responses

  1. Hadge
    said on November 11, 2012

    Nice one Tod. We loved her too.

  2. Hadge
    said on November 11, 2012

    And Mr Mac too

  3. Cheers Hadge. Just picked up your comment. Tod


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