A writer’s thoughts become their characters’ dialog. Ali said between quotation marks what goes through my mind every Mother’s Day. In “Reservations” Chapter 12, her chef husband Darien tells her he’ll be home late on Sunday.

“Honey, I have to work. It’s Mother’s Day, remember?”

She sighs and says “It’s been a long time since I’ve had a reason to remember.”

Like Ali, I’m a motherless daughter.  My last Mother’s Day with Mom was 20 years ago.  A vase filled with lilacs from my backyard contrasted with the scent of bacon-wrapped filets and asparagus in hollandaise sauce a chef I’d once worked with had taught me to prepare. After dinner, she removed ribbon and wrapping from the department store box, hugged me and the pastel pleated skirt and blouse I’d given her and said she’d wear it to church the next Sunday.

Today, I’ll visit her grave and put flowers in the vase anchored to the marble tombstone that marks the place where we buried her in that skirt and blouse. I feel her spirit in her memory and miss her everyday.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.