September 21, 2021

The Publisher speaks: Remembering my Mama on Mother’s Day

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By Joan Wilson

Joan E. Wilson

I make no apologies for republishing this poem I wrote about my Mother – Blanche (nee Bodden) Watler.

She was born in George Town, Grand Cayman on 20th September 1890 and died 29th April 1977.

Always remember your Mama – keep her close to your heart. Especially on Mother’s Day

MOTHER (Better known as Mama)

By Joan (Watler) Wilson

Blanche Watler

‘Mama’ as we called her was so quiet and sweet

To hug and kiss her was really a treat.

She was fat like mothers of her day you see

Having nine healthy children she was pleased as could be.


She never wandered far from home – no way,

She kept watch for our return each and every day

Anxious that we’d each eat the food she’d prepared

With enough left for the less fortunate we always shared.


Mama loved her garden and we could always find her there

Planting, transplanting and weeding we knew she cared.

At evening time you could smell the perfume and powder

With a hat on her head, no one could be prouder,


Especially if we were going to church where we’d be together.

I mean she was like a mother hen so proud to be gathered.

With no telephones her voice came across the bush

Shouting – especially for me, I really had to rush.


You see those days we visited each other to play or sing

All our homes had porches and each had a swing

Alas, when I was at the age of eight years

Mama’s happiness turned to tears


W.W.11 was raging and the enemy was all around

Suddenly mama was even more quiet and hardly made a sound,

Her oldest son, our brother was at sea and very much involved.

Mama kept listening for news – for the conflict to be resolved


Tears poured from mama’s eyes as she kept looking to the west,

Sitting in her swing she silently prayed and thought it best

“Oh God,” she said, “My precious son is at sea,

Please keep him safe and return him to me.”


And this is what mothers have to face today

The uncertainty in one’s heart to lose a son at war or play.

In our beautiful society illegal drugs play a big part

Do your thing report, your suspicions before they start.


Post-script. Mama’s eldest son, my brother Ladner (Laddie), died at sea during that war when the Merchant Ship he was serving on was struck by a torpedo. His body was never recovered. That is the cross she had to bear.

Share your love with your mother every day she is alive and remember her always until your day is done.

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