Motherly Love


“In the Belly of the Mother” watercolor by Alicia Bay Laurel 1985

First of all: A Mothers’ Day message from the mother of the year, Cindy Sheehan.

Secondly: My thoughts on Mothers’ Day:

Mother is more of a verb than a noun. You can give birth to someone and never mother them. And you can mother someone to whom you are not related by blood.

Like everything else, beneficial mothering is a question of dosage.

When you truly love someone as family, be they child, parent, or mate, sooner or later you will have to deal calmly with their vomit, blood or feces. That is real mothering.

Mothers are food. If the fetus lacks calcium, the mother’s teeth dissolve. Even in women who do not give birth, the impulse to feed and sacrifice for others is almost hard-wired.

Third: My most memorable Mothers’ Day was in 1967, at a concert in Los Angeles by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. They offered Motherly Love to all of us young ladies in the audience:

Motherly Love
(Cut #5 from the Mothers of Invention 1966 album Freak Out!)

Frank Zappa—guitar, vocals
Ray Collins—vocals, tambourine
Henry Vestine—guitar
Roy Estrada—bass
Jimmy Black—drums

What you need is . . .

Motherly love
Motherly love
Forget about
The brotherly and other-ly love
Motherly love
Is just the thing for you
You know your Mothers’ gonna love ya
Till ya don’t know what to do
Whoa-oh . . .

Henry’s got love
That’ll drive ya mad
They’re ravin’ ‘bout the way he do
No need to feel lonely . . .
No need to feel sad,
If he ever gets a hold on you
What you need is . . .

Motherly love
Motherly love
Forget about
The brotherly and other-ly love
Motherly love
Is just the thing for you
You know your Mothers’ gonna love ya
Till ya don’t know what to do
Whoa-oh . . .

Nature’s been good
To Roy over here
Don’t think he’s really shy
Watch your step
If he comes near
Because he’ll rock ya till ya sweat and cry
What you need is . . .

Motherly love
Motherly love
Forget about
The brotherly and other-ly love
Motherly love
Is just the thing for you
You know your Mothers’ gonna love ya
Till ya don’t know what to do
Whoa-oh . . .

Nature’s been good
To Jimmy Black
There’s a thousand know that’s true
He’ll bite your neck
And scratch your back
Till ya don’t know what to do
What you need is . . .

Motherly love
Motherly love
Forget about
The brotherly and other-ly love
Motherly love
Is just the thing for you
You know your Mothers’ gonna love ya
Till ya don’t know what to do
Whoa-oh . . .