enduring image


sudden quietness …
held in the wells
of a newborn’s eyes

It was nearly midnight when I arrived at their place, having been driven from the airport by my son-in-law. Hana had, just that day, arrived home from hospital, four days after the caesarean delivery of their son. She hadn’t heard us arrive and we caught her on the toilet with the door open, naked apart from the dressing on her belly.

Nakedness was never an issue at our place when she was growing up but I hadn’t seen her naked since she was about ten and here she was, Woman, strong yet delicate, fertile yet depleted, exhausted yet with endurance. Her tummy was still swollen, her breasts had begun to fill and the nipples were red and a little puffy. She was exhausted and had the serene look of a face avoiding pain by trance. And she was pale, so pale that she may have been made of porcelain, fragile, fine and semi-translucent. She has a face like a sculpture anyway, but that night she looked like she could have been a goddess figurine, something timeless and primal.

She apologised limply for being naked, (though in Brisbane in December it would be sensible for everyone to be naked) and I shuffled my bags into the spare room. Then we went into the dark room and peered down at the tiny body of my grandson in nappy and singlet, sleeping as his sister and his mother did, on his back, with his hands beside his head.

petal by petal
the unfurling
of a baby’s hand




25 thoughts on “enduring image

    1. No no, he is just speaking about it on his carpe diem prompt, plus the prompt speaks of Senju Kannon, a bodhisattva of mothers and seamen. he is in the Netherlands, me in Australia. not that that’s ever troubled relatives before!

      1. Ah…I did see he was to become and then became a grandfather, again, when I saw in you post you’d flown in from Brisbane I got confused…congrats to you too then, if maybe late!

  1. What a remarkable photo and haiku of which anyone could be proud! My son, now 42, was delivered by C-section also, and your lovely post has brought it all back to me — the magic, wonder, and mystery of new life. Thank you, Belinda, for starting my Saturday in such wondrous fashion. — Ron — (May this find you getting some relief from that nasty flu. Isn’t it a shame that chocolate isn’t a proven cure! ) *** 🙂 ***

  2. The photo and haiku are stunning! The second haiku is my favorite…made my heart take a breath and instantly fill up with wonder. Absolutely beautiful Belinda! And congratulations on a beautiful grandson!

  3. This is beautiful! It makes me remember some of the feelings when my own son was born by C-section – I felt overwhelmed, depleted, exhausted, fragile – yet was so completely awestruck by my new son. Wonderful piece you have written!

  4. Brisbane? Are you in Brisbane? About 10 days after I started my blog three years ago, Malcom Enright contacted me for permission to post a clock cartoon of mine. He was the editor of Brisbane’s chapter newsletter of the international National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors. Subsequently I sent him about a dozen more. It was a most thrilling way to start my blog.

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