Part I
Hoary jokes about the Mother-in-law 

Still make people laugh in the pub 
While male comics continue to ignore 
Casting the father-in-law as a dud 

The same old insults are trotted out 
By the men huddled ’round the bar 
But little do they know that her female clout 
Puts her ahead of the game by far 

A matriarch with a withering look
Can turn a he-man’s legs to jelly
Her caustic comments that follow-up
Expose his thinning hair and beer belly

Unhappiness at her daughter’s choice
Fuels a war of verbal attrition
She dominates without raising her voice
Letting silence sew doubt and division

But a bunch of flowers or compliment
Will often find a chink in her armour
Her smile may still camouflage discontent
And sarcasm, calling him a charmer

But later over tea, there is no mistake
Her mood has softened; she smiles sweetly
Offering him the biggest piece of cake
She is poised to devour him completely

Part II
To say I adore my mother-in-law

Would be a bit of an exaggeration
But it is hard to find the right words for
Familial love’s special relation

For over 40 years she’s been there for me
Though our views are not always in line
And despite not sharing a childhood history
Our bond has withstood the test of time

She is not a battle axe or harridan
Though fearsome once installed in her kitchen
Vetting new recruits for the family clan
She demands unwavering conviction.

Then you realise you only get one shot
As the son-in-law who loves her a lot.

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Angie's Diary