Portrait of the Artist’s Mom

When daVinci sketched as a little lad,
did his mama save every vellum pad?

What did Picasso’s mother do
with his boyhood paintings and the things he drew?

Did the mothers of Van Gogh and Renoir and Monet
ever dare to throw their sons’ works away?

Or those moms of Cassatt and O’Keeffe and Wood –
did they keep their kids’ projects, as good moms should?

How we mothers of artistes so petite and prolific
dearly cherish each piece, in its own way terrific.

But collages and paintings collect in a heap…
and then: which do we toss, and which do we keep?

Oh! How I feel the ache tug at my heart
when forced to decide which is junk, which is art.

And what if our children grow up to be famous?
Museums all over might cry out and blame us…

The ones who shortsightedly tossed in the trash
those crayoned creations worth millions in cash.

©2010 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz