Saturday, January 18, 2014

MERRY CHRISTMAS GRAMMY AND GRANDFATHER



Following is a poem that I wrote December 2012 in remembrance of two very dear people who had a profound impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today if not for them. There were a few families in the community in which they lived, for we were all related, however, everyone seemed to gather at their house. There was a constant stream of people hanging in and around the house; there was never a dull moment. Anything you wanted to know about anything, you learned here. Whether it was from them or from children, grandchildren, and countless cousins who congregated there, there was some tidbit of gossip or some useful information circulating. They didn't have much, but you could always find something to eat, and the house was small, but you could always find somewhere to rest your weary head. You were always welcome, especially at Christmas time. Hope you enjoy this poem as much as I enjoyed writing it.



Merry Christmas Grammy and Grandfather wherever you may be
I went to look at your house today but there’s nothing left to see
The place where your house once stood is filled with a lot of snow
And under all that white stuff, well, I just don’t know

Since my legs were tired from walking in the snow
 I thought I’d stay awhile, I really had no place to go
I sat on a stump and pictured you both there
Grandfather smoking at the kitchen table and Grammy in her chair

Grammy, I remember one Christmas when I came to decorate your tree
Randy was alive then and you got so mad at me
Because I went outside to have a smoke with the boys
And when I came back, oh, you made such a noise!

But I finished the tree and when I turned on the lights
You smiled softly; your eyes were so bright
Even the boys stopped playing poker with the cards
Everyone was compelled to look at the beautiful twinkling stars
  
Another Christmas I remember, I was bogged down with problems
I decorated the tree while you both listened, we talked for hours
I cooked a pot of chicken soup that day
And by the time I left my problems seemed to vanish away
I walked out the door and felt so good
I made a snowman and brought in some wood

Grandfather, you always had such stories to tell
Like the time you pretended to be a bear and made my mother yell
Well, let’s face it, you scared her to hell
You used to say that on a very cold day
Your words would turn to ice and just fall away
Sometimes I didn’t understand what you were talking about
Oh, Grandfather dear, you were such a boy scout

The last Christmas I remember spending with you two
Someone else had decorated the tree there was nothing left to do
But that was okay because I had my hands tied
Trying to take care of your great-grandchild
You said that he was such a great joy
He really is a wonderful little boy

It hasn’t been the same since you both passed away
You were the reason I went home but could never stay
I’ll never forget the things that you taught me
The times that I spent went with you talking and laughing

Grandmother, you were like a mother to me
The kind that would never let me be
When you had something to say you let me have it
 I made not a comment I stood there and took all your judgment
You kept me in check you kept me in line
But it felt good it felt fine

Grandfather, you were like a father to me
You salted my warts and gave me money
And when you told me stories about the old days I made not a sound
I listened as always never horsing around

Grammy and Grandfather you were the pinnacle of the town
Everyone gathered there from miles around
As grandparents you never had a day off
And at Christmastime you always made such a scoff
Puddings and cakes and pies and such
You knew when you went there you would eat too much

And the decorations and ornaments hanging around
It was like going to the North Pole where happiness and cheer abound
Grandfather was like Santa, jolly and quick-witted
Grammy was like Mrs. Claus giving away gifts that she knitted
Sometimes when Grandfather would have a smooch of the bottle
Grammy would say, goddamn fool, I don’t want to snuggle!

 I miss you two so very much this minute
I wish I could open up Heaven’s doors and see you both in it
I pray that one day I will see you again
To find Grammy smiling and Grandfather with a grin

Well, my butt was sore from sitting on that stump
And as I was straightening up I heard a thump
I turned around just in time to see
A large snowy owl looking at me
And I thought for a moment this can’t be
But I knew in my heart it must be Grandfather and Grammy
They gave me a sign to say they were proud of me
Immediately, it filled me with glee
And as I left the place where I once use to play
I realized they are gone but they will never go away

Merry Christmas Grandfather and Grammy
In Heaven you will remain
It will be quite some time
But I will see you again