Sunday, November 29, 2009

the ground remembers her

thanksgiving weekend has done me good. i have had 4 days to really get my batteries recharged and prepare myself for the november/december marathon.

i have really enjoyed spending time with the extended families too. i relish the opportunity to reconnect with people i haven't seen in a long time. best of all, i get to listen to the stories that fill up the books of my family history. this year we even watched some home movies that just about everyone forgot even existed. it was slightly embarrassing, but fun. i had a really fantastic talk with my mom about my grandparents relationship too. here are some thoughts that have been stewing.


my grandfather
loved my grandmother
in a stifling way
i imagine their courtship
he arrives from the heat of a summer day
smelling like a tobacco blossom
her shy eyes meet his
hand on the small of her back,
he guides her to the car

years later
he sits in their smoke filled kitchen
brandishing a hand of cards
like a loaded weapon
offers a kiss to the cheek
as she delivers a cold beer to the table
his conversation with the male neighbor
continues on casually
and he makes some remark
about the value of a good woman

in the dark of their bedroom
he whispers into the softness of her neck
his words of love
he wraps his arms around her as if she were some fragile bird
and admits the fear that rests behind his closed eyes
that she may dissapear
into the stillness of the night
without so much as a sound

she has been without him thirteen years now
and she tells me she can sometimes hear him
asking for a light
or a sandwich
when the night air settles in around her
that is his gentle way
to stifle from the beyond


home movies

watching myself
immortalized in celluloid
the colors of my hair and skin
wavering like the reflection of water on the side of a pool
here is the evidence
that once, despite my current state of cynicism and lethargy
i was young and energetic

who was that child, full of questions?
where did she learn those words
and would she let me borrow them
if i promised to return them in mint condition?

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