Poems & Essays

20 Jul

I Love Yous Necessary

General/Column No Response

Another week, another funeral.
This time a young boy, perched
on the edge of life. Grief grew
personal, remembering our sons
at home, grubby from ball practice,
squabbling over the last donut,
impatient for dinner to hit the table.

Dinner could wait. Like a mama bear,
I gathered sons, one by one, in my
arms, shuffled their hair, my eyes
brimful. Told them how much I loved
them, appreciated them. There were
squirms, “aw moms!” and grins.

More than my life, more than the smell
of meatloaf burning. Dinner could wait.
Hugs couldn’t. We’d fix mac and cheese
from a box if necessary. At the rate
they devoured food, it didn’t matter.
“Wash up, guys. Reggie, lose that
filthy shirt. Sit, let me see you.”


Gail Denham has been a mother for 55 years, a grandmother for many years, and a writer over 36 years. Many of her published poems and stories revolve around family. She has also sold photos to magazines, newspapers, books, etc. – many of these photos involved family interaction and children having fun. Gail belongs to many state poetry societies, leads writing and photography workshops at conferences and feels it’s been her calling to have children, to house many young people, and to continue to be in their lives.

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