Ruth Florence Ovitt Towne's favorite flowers...


By Charles Towne 

My mother was a great example of healthy optimism.  Her courageous spirit, based on her faith, and belief in a loving God, kept her wrapped in a warm garment of love during her sojourn on this earth.  Did she have an easy life?  Not hardly, and rarely did positive, healthy people surround her, but she was for the most part happy and positive.  Boy, do I ever miss her smile.

While others were grumping and criticizing, and creating mischief, she was writing or quoting poetry or delving into her favorite book, the Bible.

I especially like this little tidbit that mama left with me: “Be nice, think good thoughts, and don’t put stinky stuff in your mouth.”

(When she referred to stinky stuff she was speaking of gossip.)

For years there were those poor deluded souls, some of them very close to her, people that should have known better, people that felt their sole purpose in life was to diminish her.  She knew what they were doing.  Was she angry?  No. Did she retaliate? Not one whit. Instead, she prayed for them and heaped coals of fire on their heads by loving them.

Let it be said of us that we shared the joy and not misery.

Let us bring peace, mercy, and love to all around us.

Mama never owned a thing in her life that if she thought you needed it she wouldn’t have given it to you, consequently, she didn’t own much but what she possessed, God values.  She was rich.

She said, and I love this one “I tasted life and found it delicious.”

(When was the last time you tasted life and found it to be delicious?)

I like what Friedrich Nietzsche said: “And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.

My mother could always hear the music.

Following is one of mama’s poems:

Twin Sisters
Ruth Florence Ovitt Towne

Duty, stern duty, has a twin sister called kindness:

Duty meets kindness face to face,
And as each contemplates the other there takes place
A pattern of benevolence which will ultimately free,
The ones who find these graces from thankless drudgery.

The drudgery of a task late started, late completed,
The drudgery of no thanks for what you’ve done,
The drudgery of no friends because you’ve made none,
The drudgery of no place under the sun.

The drudgery of a heart forever empty,
The drudgery of hands idle and forlorn,
The drudgery of a hearth where love has vanished,
The drudgery of no roses, just a thorn.

But duty calls, and kindness smiles
As hand in hand they skip across life’s miles;
No drudgery here, consecration takes it place,
Kindness devoted to duty, the ultimate in grace.

I love you mama, your Huckleberry friend.

Charles Towne is first and foremost a Christian. An octogenarian, author, journalist, wildlife photographer, naturalist, caregiver, and survivor, his life has been and continues to be, a never-ending adventure filled with possibilities never imagined. He has adopted the philosophy that to Live fully, laugh uproariously, love passionately, and learn like there is no tomorrow, is a formula for a long and joy-filled life.


  1. Brought tears to my eyes…beautiful! Your momma raised you right and, apparently, was an incredibly forgiving and patient person…lol. Cheers to her up in heaven!
    Now, I would like to offer some food for thought… I am a step-mother. I am also a mother figure for many that consider me their “family of choice”, not origin. How do you plan on celebrating mother’s day with these people in your life? Lets not forget those special people that may not share a gene pool with us, but have made heart-felt contributions to our life on a daily basis!

  2. Dear NH, yes, my mama was all that and so much more but honestly did you have to stress the forgiving and patient stuff! BEING! Yes, your question, though hypothetical might well be answered with that one word. BEING yourself and loving each of them. Let them know how much you appreciate them. Bring the music that is unique to you into their lives if but for a moment. Music? Imagine what music flowers could create. Imagine the flowers in heaven swaying, dancing if you will as they sing with lovely melody unknown to man. When a delicate crystal is caressed it hums and resonates and is so very sweet. Let your life touch your family in such a way and it will be a true gift from God. Blessings dear one, Chaz

  3. Very beautiful Chuck, you mother was a wise, and wonderful soul. May we all be more like her and focus on the positivity we see in life. God bless you and yours.


  4. Thanks so much Donnie. Yeppir, that she was pal. If we could all be blessed with family like my mama what a joy this old world would be. You take care, Chaz

  5. Great piece Chuck and as the saying goes “the apple didn’t fall far from the tree”. I counted my blessings today to be able to wish my 92 year young mom “happy Mother’s Day” this morning. 938 miles separate me from mom but our daily phone calls keep us close. Thanks for sharing yet another inspirational article.

  6. Hey Mike, how ya doin’ man? I can’t understand people that seem to abandon their parents? Nancy’s son has done just that and I have to say, she doesn’t deserve that sort of treatment. How much would it cost for a phone call, or a card for that matter? It breaks my heart because Nanny praises her son. Oh well, I can hope that he wakes up before it is too late. As you know You are blessed to still have your mother pal. I miss my mama greatly. You take care, Chaz

  7. Thinking back I have come to believe God gives us mothers so we can begin to understand His love at least a little. Growing up, I now know there never was a single second that I or my brothers were not loved totally. Mom may have wanted to lock us in the cellar for a good long while, but even that couldn’t hide her love. We could do nothing to earn it, it was always there! Her anger we could and did manage to earn, and we deserved what we got ( I understand this now, not so much then) She taught us to be kind, to laugh with, not at,to consider the other fellow and how he felt! Even when the dementia took her, she would get really mad when someone else was mistreated! I really miss her and thank God for the many years he gave us!

  8. Richard my friend it sounds like you are talking about my mother! Mothers really do personify God’s wonderful limitless inexpressible everlasting magnificent love. Thanks so much pal, Chaz

  9. What an awesome Mother’s Day tribute. As others have commented, her goodness and kindness apparently rubbed off on you. Thanks for honoring her memory and sharing her poetry.

  10. My mother used to tell us kids,
    “I love you too much to not raise you right” She was a devoted mother, good wife, loyal friend and steadfast Christian. I love her so much and miss her everyday!
    I am forever thankful to God for giving me the best mother in the world. But, I bet we all feel that way. What a blessing!!

  11. Kristin, thanks so very much for the kind words. I know that for you to enjoy mama’s poetry would please her greatly and for that fact your words touch me deeply. Her consummate purpose in her 95 years was to glorify God and please others therefore for you to enjoy what she wrote would bring her great joy and put a smile on her face. God bless you and keep you close my dear friend, Chaz

  12. Dear CSG, AINT IT THE TRUTH? Our mamas were after all mortal and being mortal they made mistakes. Sure they had their little foibles and committed an occasional boo boo but even at that they were larger than life and because of their humanity we could love them with a special love. Let us hold them close to our hearts and never forget them. Blessings on you, Chaz

  13. My Mother was the best friend I had, growing up! And even after leaving home at 19. I got a job with Western Electric and she would write, when she knew I would be at a location long enough. She would also let me know that she was praying for me. There is nothing like a praying mother! God Bless all mothers!

  14. Don, I am not sure that as kids we had the good sense to always appreciate our mothers. Looking back I can still hear her voice and her laughter and see her beautiful smile even when times were tough. I can almost taste the food that she cooked for her family even today. Thank you mama! Yes Don, God bless all mothers is absolutely right! Chaz

  15. Cercomstances Separate me from my mom at 19 ,But no matter how far or how long I was not near her She was always NEAR, I’m sure it is because of her Prayers I am Safe in Jesus today!

  16. How very true Ernest, my own experience has proven time and again and over and over that the fervent prayers of a faithful mother accomplishes more good than can possibly be imagined. I can remember when I was just about the size of a little wart hearing mama pray for me. Wow, what an impact her prayers were to eventually have on my life! If the truth were to be known I am sure her prayerful intervention saved my life many times over. Blessings my friend, Chaz


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