A Sonnet for Mother’s Day

…for those who loved and laboured…

We had our Mothering Sunday in Lent this year. but I understand May 12th is Mother’s day in America so I am reposting this poem today for all my American friends and readers.. It’s a thanksgiving for all parents, especialy for those who bore the fruitful pain of labour, and more particularly in this poem I have singled out for praise those heroic single parents who, for whatever reason, have found themselves bearing alone the burdens, and sharing with no-one the joys of their parenthood.

This poem is taken from my collection Sounding the Seasons published by Canterbury Press. Canterbury have also launched a kindle edition

I am grateful to Oliver  Neale for his thought-provoking work as a photographer, and, as always, you can hear the poem by clicking on the ‘play’ button, or on the title

Mothering Sunday


At last, in spite of all, a recognition,

For those who loved and laboured for so long,

Who brought us, through that labour, to fruition

To flourish in the place where we belong.

A thanks to those who stayed and did the raising,

Who buckled down and did the work of two,

Whom governments have mocked instead of praising,

Who hid their heart-break and still struggled through,

The single mothers forced onto the edge

Whose work the world has overlooked, neglected,

Invisible to wealth and privilege,

But in whose lives the kingdom is reflected.

Now into Christ our mother church we bring them,

Who shares with them the birth-pangs of His Kingdom.


Filed under christianity, Poems, politics

3 responses to “A Sonnet for Mother’s Day

  1. Faith

    Incredibly beautiful, leaving us mom’s humble and wanting to honor our own precious mothers. My mom was the greatest single reason I connected with God and His grace. Thank you, Bethany!!

  2. MASSON M.

    Thanks, Malcolm. This made me remember your own mother (I was Senior Tutor of St John’s in Durham when they joined the SCR) and what a beautiful woman she was. I clearly remember her kind smile and sheer goodness.
    All good wishes,

    Dr Margaret Masson
    Vice-Principal and Senior Tutor
    St Chad’s College
    Durham University
    18 North Bailey
    DH1 3RH

    0191 334 3354
    0191 334 3358 (College Office)

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    • malcolmguite

      Dear Margaret thanks for this. Although my father died some years ago I am happy to say my mother is still very much with us, living with my sister in Scotland. I will remember you to her when I phone her tonight!

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