Ligonier writer shares sayings from her youth
“Curiosity killed the cat,” “Many hands make light work,” “An apple doesn't fall far from the tree,” — these sayings and many more are among those that Mildred Taylor recalls her mother quoting throughout her life.
In her recently released memoir “As Mother Would Say…” Taylor, a Ligonier Township resident, shares experiences from her childhood growing up in North Carolina in the 1930s and 1940s. The focus of the story is on her mother — a strong, yet insecure woman whose communication with her daughter often consisted of sayings and proverbs.
Taylor, who has been fond of writing from a very early age, said she had been urged throughout the years by both a childhood friend and her husband to put these memories of her mother down on paper. She finally began to write the memoir after she told her young grandson ‘Don't put the cart before the horse' and he was unfamiliar with the saying.
“He didn't understand,” said Taylor, “and I realized these sayings are dying. I wanted to preserve them for my five grandchildren and their generation.”
Taylor brainstormed sayings and memories for her book with her biggest supporter and husband of 60 years, Gustav Taylor. Not only was he encouraging of the whole process, he helped put the manuscript together and proofread late additions to the book.
“Without Gus, there would be no book,” Taylor said.
The emotions in Taylor's narrative are enhanced with poetry and black and white photos, bringing the book to life and giving the reader a true sense of what the author's childhood was like and the relationship she shared with her parents.
“Hers is a poignant, personal story of a time in our history that most people have forgotten or never learned,” said Gus Taylor.
Taylor's love of writing began in fifth grade, when her teacher encouraged her to write a poem. Additionally, Taylor recalls her senior English teacher focusing on writing and fondly said that teacher was the biggest influence in life.
“She encouraged me to go to college and major in writing,” said Taylor. “It only takes one person to encourage you.”
She was so influenced by the positive educational experiences in her life, that Taylor became an elementary school teacher and taught in Hempfield Area School District for 30 years and then at Ligonier Valley Learning Center for an additional six years. Throughout her years of teaching, she continued with her writing and won multiple awards for her poetry. Taylor has been published in several anthologies and has been both an active member and president of the Pittsburgh Poetry Society for more than 40 years.
Taylor hopes to introduce the public to her book by giving readings of her memoir at local establishments and participating in book singings. Presently, “As Mother Would Say…” can be purchased at Ligonier Outfitters and John M Clark Designer Goldsmith, both located on West Main Street in Ligonier, or by contacting Taylor at email@example.com.
“Throughout her life, Mildred Taylor has been a prolific and truly talented writer. Her memoir is a fine collection of precious memories,” said Eugene Price, an author and editor residing in NC.
Cami DiBattista is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 24th ‘Tastes of the Town’ puts Ligonier Valley restaurants center stage
- More than 100 turn out for public hearing in Ligonier
- Great Ligonier Valley Cleanup marks 10th year
- Details on Laurel Mountain plans unveiled
- Irish symbolism, ancient mysteries to be discussed at Ligonier library
- New options for listening to ‘The Valley’ radio station