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I love how she jokes around.

What I Learned From My Mother by Julia Kasdorf | Poetry Foundation

She is always fun no matter what, and she gives me great advice. My mom is more than a mom; she is like my best friend! The State Standards provide a way to evaluate your students' performance. My Mother Do you have someone who is great, spends time with you, cares for you, and is an important person? Based on a work at k Teacher Support: Click to find out more about this resource. Level: Grade 4 Grade 5. Topic: A person who means the world to me.

Mode: Explanatory Writing. Form: Personal Essay. Theme: Family Love Home.

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Standards Correlations: The State Standards provide a way to evaluate your students' performance. C D B A She taught her daughters the practical side of politics, too. She ran for city council in the mid-sixties, a half century ago, when women were marginalized in public office, tokens at best. She took us canvassing door-to-door—oblivious that it was painful for her self-conscious teen-agers—to explain her platform and ask for votes. She loved the experience and lost with grace.

The lessons stuck.


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Years later, my sister and I both canvassed for Presidential candidates. Politics brought out her feisty side. Looks like Democrats are committing suicide as far as beating Nixon.

News from Vietnam looks depressing—more than usual. God, if only it could end today! When I became a foreign correspondent, my mother started collecting my letters to her, as well. She would decipher my spiny scrawl and, on her electric typewriter, retype every letter and postcard.

Meatballs – my family’s tradition

She also preserved and catalogued my photographs in plastic protective sheets. She assembled them all, with my articles, in oversized legal binders. Over forty years, she made hundreds of volumes that eventually filled floor-to-ceiling bookshelves that I had built inside a long closet.

Rediscovering the good taste of yesterday.

Nani continued to act until the end. She was ninety. I was out of the country at the time, but my sister and her young daughter flew in to see it. It seemed so reductive and awkward to look at it. It reminded me of how the early astronomers must have felt with their primitive telescopes. By the time of that performance, in , my mother had survived colon cancer twice, as well as multiple heart attacks.

A week before Christmas, she got pneumonia. We took turns sitting and sleeping in the hospital room. We asked if she wanted anything; she said she was hungry for chocolate. We got her a chocolate muffin from the hospital cafeteria. Later that day, the nurse asked my mother if she wanted a sedative to ease her difficult breathing.

Neither of us could think of anything except to tell her we loved her. She was gone by early the next morning.

My Last Conversation with My Father

It was on the second floor of my town house. When I got home, water was gushing down the walls. Almost everything I owned was destroyed; the fire department declared my house uninhabitable. In her will, my mother endowed a scholarship in theatre at the University of Michigan. Last fall, I received a letter, on pink paper, with writing in big letters in black magic marker.