In 2005, when “Four My Daughters” was first printed, we were not certain that my mother would live to see the final product. We all knew she had been struggling with her health but, in retrospect, we had been ignoring the warning signs. In the spring of that year, she started emailing me her poems, and by early summer we were well into the process of compiling and editing. But in September she finally went for tests. I remember well, the doctor saying to me, “I can’t tell you whether she has days or weeks to live.”
The 2005 Foreword did not include this information. It was just too raw to include in the story of those verses.
Radiation treatments began immediately, and the work on the book went in to high gear as well. Not only was it a welcomed distraction from all the medical concerns, but there was no time to waste getting it to the printer, if she was ever going to hold it in her hands. The final edit was forfeited in favour of a finished product.
We celebrated with a book launch that fall, between the last radiation treatment and the major surgery scheduled for the New Year. Today, six years later, she is in fine health at 85 years of age!
Despite the imperfections of that first printing, feedback was very positive. And now we are out of copies! While a second volume of poetry is begging to be polished up, this final edit comes first. The poems have been rearranged slightly; a separate chapter about my grandfather’s death was added; and there are more pictures. All these things we would have done in the final edit of the 2005 edition had there been time.
We hope you like this revised version.