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The Latina Book Club wishes everyone a Happy Mother's Day. 
And in honor of our Moms, on earth and in heaven, our friend author Manuel Melendez
shares with us a poem he wrote five years ago for his Mom on her 80th birthday.    
From Manny:  To honor her strength and her wonderful heart, I’m sharing this poem that I wrote for my mother when we celebrated her 80th Birthday.  Five years later, the poem is one of the things I’m proud to have written for her, and now I know with her blessings, I want to dedicate this poem to every mother that brings that strength, that love and sweetness into all their children’s heart.  Happy Mother's Day!   Feliz Dia de Madres!
Manny and his Mom
When I was a child
I would look at you
and ask myself
Who is that woman?
Who are you?
are you the woman
who cleaned my face?
and dried my tears
with warm kisses
and would tickle me
to hear my laughter
and joyful shouts
As a child
I would find my dreams
dreams of holy angels
as I listened
your beautiful songs
but not as beautiful
as your eyes
that filled me with love
and lifted up my soul
into the clouds
by the sun’s rays
As a child
your voice
was always the shield
of protection
the one that removed
my nightmares
with little kisses
and the blessings
of our Lord
As a child
and in your hands
I learned enchantments
and I understood
the simple flight
of butterflies
and the proud lament
of el jibarito coqui
As a child
I grew up
and I became
the man I am now
and still
when the moon embraces me
and my eyes
become heavy
I still ask myself
Who is that woman?
Who are you?
You are
the one that fills me
with so much pride
and inspiration
who enriches my dreams
supports my triumphs
and doesn’t allow
my failures
to be the end of the world
but only obstacles
that together
we will confront
and defeat
everything that’s bad
Now that I look at you
the same way
when as a child
in my crib
I know who that woman is
She is my best friend
my first and last love
my beautiful mother
my Saint,
that God placed in my life.
so I will never lack
kisses, embraces
and motherly love.
Happy Mother's Day!
Desde niño
te miraba
y me preguntaba
¿Quien es esa
¿Quien eres tú?
¿Es usted la señora
que me limpia
la cara
y secaba mis lágrimas
con tibios besos
y me hacia cosquilla
para oír mis rizas
y gritos de alegres llantos?
Desde niño
encontraba mis sueños
sueños de angelitos santos
al escuchar
tus canciones lindas,
pero no tan lindas
como tus ojos
que me llenan
de amor
y alza mi alma
entre las nubes
por rayitos del sol
Desde niño
tu voz
fue siempre el escudo
de protección
la que eliminaba
mis pesadillas
con pequeños besitos
y bendiciones
de nuestro Dios
Desde niño
y en tus manos
aprendí maravillas
y comprendí
el simple vuelo
de las mariposas
y el orgulloso
del jibarito coqui
Desde niño
y me convertí
en el hombre
que soy hoy
y todavía
cuando la luna me cubre
y los ojos
se ponen pesados
me pregunto
¿quien es esa mujer?
¿quien eres tú?
Tú eres
la que me llena
con tantos orgullos
e inspiraciones
quien me en riqueza
mis sueños
apoye mis triunfos
y no me permite
de yo ver mis derrotas
como el fin del mundo
pero solo obstáculos
que juntos
podemos enfrentar
y derrotar
todo que nos hacen mal
Ahora que te miro
cuando era niño
en mi cuna
se quien es esa mujer
Ella es mi mejor amiga
mi primer y último amor
mi linda Madre
mi santita
que Dios puso
en mi vida
para que nunca falte
besos, abrazos
y amor maternal.
Feliz Dia de Madres!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Manuel A. Melendez is a Puerto Rican author born in Puerto Rico and raised in East Harlem, NY.  He is the author of a mystery/ supernatural novel (WHEN ANGELS FALL), two poetry books, and a collection of Christmas short stories.  BATTLE FOR A SOUL was inspired by events that resulted in his own naming at birth, and these events haunted him from childhood and throughout the writing of the book.  The author lives in Sunnyside, NY, harvesting tales from the streets of the city.