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Quotes about grandmother

Red Riding Hood

Many are the deceivers:
The suburban matron,
proper in the supermarket,
list in hand so she won't suddenly fly,
buying her Duz and Chuck Wagon dog food,
meanwhile ascending from earth,
letting her stomach fill up with helium,
letting her arms go loose as kite tails,
getting ready to meet her lover
a mile down Apple Crest Road
in the Congregational Church parking lot.
Two seemingly respectable women
come up to an old Jenny
and show her an envelope
full of money
and promise to share the booty
if she'll give them ten thou
as an act of faith.
Her life savings are under the mattress
covered with rust stains

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From the Diary of a Mimes

At my grandmothers house, you will see a hundred years of family portraits. We are a family of mimes. The portraits are of mimes.
You may ask why would someone wish to be a mime? For it is a limited existence beings that a mime s a simile of a single frame photograph. Look at the pictures at grandmothers house, do you feel the pain? This is my pain.
Becoming a mime.
I was six or seven years old. Grandmother and I were sitting in her living room, I had slept over at her house for a weekend while mom, dad and little brother tend to other things. Grandmother was in an odd mood today. She looked at her pictures and smiled some. And cried a little." I think its time you wore your mime face." She said. Today you will learn how to become a mime." So I said" Yes madman she proceeded to make up my face.
As she put on my makeup she started to cry. She cried for a long time. I was a little girl I started crying as well. I could not watch my grandmother cry without shedding tears of my own. So we sat and cried.
'Why are we crying' I asked? 'Well dear, sometimes life deals you a hard enough blow that even a mime will cry." I said 'Ok.'I was soon to find out what she meant. This is the day I learned a safe place for a heart to be. I learned that a person could freeze emotions and save them for future use. Yes place them in a jar, to be opened at an appropriate time. For that is what I do. You see I write a sad story, open a jar of tears and cry for a minute.
So after a good cry, grandmother took my hand and led me to the foyer wondered why I had to wear my mime face. Well grandmother had hers on, so I thought it must be a family thing, and I did not question. We sat under the foyer, was hot.New Orleans is a hot place at certain times of the year. There was no breeze, was still as could be. Nothing moved, except perhaps the webs a few lucky spiders, the ones who had prey to close in on.
'God bless mother nature, child. Its infinite wisdom, allows all creatures sustenance 'Uhh grandmother, that is a spider. Kill it, mom does.''No." She says, this is his house. If he were in mine, then I would kill him, but he lives here and kills insects.'
'You say he" I asked." How do you know it is a male spider? " She sighs." I do not know.' So I ask." Then why do you say it is a male? " It is taken for granted that any unknown sex is referred to as he. God is male." I answer" God could be a woman. I do not think anyone knows Gods sex grandmother. The world would be better if God was a female.''Perhaps so child." She answers, " Perhaps so.'
'Your father used to say that when he was your age. Always a philosophy with him." And her eye tiered up again. But I saw her turn to ice of a sudden. The tears dried. Then a long white car pulled up in the driveway, grandmother took my hand and we walked to the car. A man in a grey uniform opened the door and we sat inside. 'I will remember every detail of this day. For this is where my life changed.'
The car drove us to a big fancy building, it was full of mimes dressed in black. Even as a child I realized that something was wrong, so many mimes, all crying and made up in misery faces. I wondered why. They all parted as grandmother and I entered the building.
It was an odd place. Sad sounding music reminded me of harmonies of sorrow, organs and moans and tears. There were 3 pretty boxes in the center of the room. People were all around, most of them mimes, most were crying. 'Grand mother, what is in the boxes? 'I asked." Why do all the mimes look into them and cry? ''Never mind my child. Just be a mime.'
'Well if my daddy was here he would pick me up and I could see what was in the boxes." My grandmother looked down at me and started to cry, and the tears flowed." Brace yourself girl." She said. Then she picked me up. Eagerly I looked over the side of the box. In it was the reason I became a mime. I saw my fathers body made up to be a mime laying with his hands together as if he were praying. My brother and mother the same in other boxes. I knew they had passed away.
It was hard on a little girl, to have it etched into her mind.I kicked and screamed till grandmother set me on my feet. I ran out of the room and never spoke another word until this day.




I do not like this one much.

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Grandmother Told Me So

The declaration has been spoken,
For Grandmother told me so.
The darkeys have got their fetlocks broken,
For Grandmother told me so.
Oh, won't they have a lot of iron on hand!
And when the news travels,
Oh, won't it be grand!
'Twill sweep like a sugarcane over the land,
For Grandmother told me so.

American Eagle! hysterical bird!
Oh, flap your wing and crow!
The slaves are embellished--yes, that's the word,
For Grandmother told me so!

There's curious times in that ur section,
For Grandmother told me so.
They think they will have a resurrection,
For Grandmother told me so.
The penholders raving like persons insane --

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English Eclogues II - The Grandmother's Tale

JANE.
Harry! I'm tired of playing. We'll draw round
The fire, and Grandmamma perhaps will tell us
One of her stories.

HARRY.
Aye--dear Grandmamma!
A pretty story! something dismal now;
A bloody murder.

JANE.
Or about a ghost.


GRANDMOTHER.
Nay, nay, I should but frighten you. You know
The other night when I was telling you
About the light in the church-yard, how you trembled
Because the screech-owl hooted at the window,
And would not go to bed.

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In Remembrance of Grandma - Poem & Background

Now that people are becoming more aware of my poetic efforts, interests are being expressed regarding the background of my poetry - in addition, to my spiritual muse. In this installment, I share the background and poem 'In Remembrance of Grandma'.

I recognize that most of you reading this article will not know much about my maternal Grandmother, other than what you're able to glean from this page. However, there are universal lessons that need to be shared. This poem was originally written for her funeral.

For nearly forty years, I was blessed to have known my grandparents; blessed - because many people don't have the opportunity to know their family history personally from those who came before them. Within about one decade, mine were all gone - with my maternal grandmother being the last one to die. Of the four of them, I had spent the most time with her. My grandmother had moved to Portland, Maine; this came about as the result of two significant events in her life. First, her husband Al Massa died unexpectedly; second, her oldest daughter (and my mom) had gone through a divorce. So they decided to purchase a home jointly and move on with their lives. Also living with them was my aunt Tina, my mother's younger sister.

My grandmother was an intelligent woman; she was one of those people who completed the New York Times crossword puzzles - in ink and usually in under an hour. And she grew some of the most beautiful roses in her tiny backyard. It was wonderful to see the joy in her eyes when it came to her flowers. The problem was that she was heart-broken when Al passed away; for decades they would go dancing at night, just to hold one another more often. With him gone, she stopped living for herself. Less than a year from his retirement, her husband died on the picket line at work. Although I can only imagine her grief, it was difficult to see the affects of this tragedy slowly eat away at her soul. She rarely left her home, with the exception of going to Church, the grocery store or some of the neighbors' homes a few times during the month. She and Al were to go to Hawaii for a second honeymoon, but she could not bear to go there without him. In The Word, we are essentially reminded that 'people without vision perish' (and yes, I know that there are variations of interpretation of this concept) . Despite our ability to absorb pain, we must learn to move forward in life and not let the pain consume us.

For many years, she smoked cigarettes and was unwilling to give them up. She did so eventually; my mother moved out of their house, Tina got married; she and her husband lived with my grandma. Tina and husband Greg started their own family, raising three boys - thus giving her the incentive to quit. As most everyone knows, smoking increases one's risk of having cancer. My family were under the impression that she had managed to escape the misery of that disease. Less than two weeks from her death was when most of the family learned that she had contracted cancer and emphysema.

Although I understand and appreciate the need for privacy, it was selfish of my grandmother not to share the condition of her health. Her justification for not telling anyone, was that she had decided not to go through with the cancer treatment. By not telling us, she figured that no one would be given the opportunity to dissuade her from her decision. After all, it was her decision (and rightfully so) . Before she died, Tina started quickly gathering information about cancer - to better learn about what to expect regarding the few remaining days of her mother's life. One cancer brochure shocked her; as a result of reading the material, she was now having to deal with guilt. This particular pamphlet laid out symptoms and patterns of human behavior of those suffering from this fatal disease - stuff that Tina had observed, but never realized the meaning of until it was too late. So in effect, my grandmother caused her family more pain by not sharing. In addition, not everyone who cared about her, had enough time to say good-bye (while she was alive) .

Although I had time to compose this brief poem in her honor, I did not have enough time to process my grandmother's death fully (prior to the service) . I was supposed to read the following poem and share a few words. To my surprise, I was choked up with immense grief, which kept me from delivering my eulogy; my wife kindly stepped in and presented the poem. One of my brothers was extremely upset for my inability to talk on behalf of my grandmother; so he spoke on my family's behalf. It's one of my few regrets in life; however, she was the only grandparent of mine that got to read my poetry manuscript. Less than two months before her death, she had taken time read my poetry and was pleasantly pleased with my efforts. During her appraisal of my work was the first time I learned that she wrote poetry - as of today, I've never gotten to read a line of poetry that she wrote. So it breaks my heart not to know what she composed, as well as not being able to share any more of my writing with her. And so here is my tribute for her...

 

In Remembrance of Grandma

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Sestina

September rain falls on the house.
In the failing light, the old grandmother
sits in the kitchen with the child
beside the Little Marvel Stove,
reading the jokes from the almanac,
laughing and talking to hide her tears.

She thinks that her equinoctial tears
and the rain that beats on the roof of the house
were both foretold by the almanac,
but only known to a grandmother.
The iron kettle sings on the stove.
She cuts some bread and says to the child,

It's time for tea now; but the child
is watching the teakettle's small hard tears
dance like mad on the hot black stove,
the way the rain must dance on the house.
Tidying up, the old grandmother
hangs up the clever almanac

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My Grandmother Would Drive

My grandmother could make a biscuit taste like steak.
And she did everything from 'scratch'.
Including making her own soap too.

The only thing I disliked,
That my Grandmother Clara ever did...
Was to get her driver's license.

My grandmother would drive,
And have an entire conversation...
Without looking at the road!
I had heard rumors of this...
But to witness it,
Was right out of Six Flags.
Or Disney World.

Don't ask me how she did this.
I was too busy trying to keep myself alive.
That 'imaginary' brake on the passenger side,
Of my grandmother's car...

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Ballade Of The Hardy Annual

Many a jest that refuses to die
Bobs up again as the seasons appear;
Deathless it hits us again in the eye-
Changeless and dull as the calendar year.
Musty and mouldy and yellow and sere,
Stronger, withal, than the sturdiest oak;
Ancient and solemn and deadly and drear-
Down with the grandmother-funeral joke!

Soon as the snow has forgotten to fly,
All through the day of the 'leathery sphere,'
Jokelets and pictures and verses we spy
All on the theme of the grandmother dear.
Bonnets, umbrellas, and buckets of beer
Please us and tickle us quite to the choke.
But-on this matter our attitude's clear-
Down with the grandmother-funeral joke!

Giggle we can at a blueberry pie;
Scream at a comedy king or ameer;

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Three yards up the road

When your great-great-Grandmother
sold across the brush of cotton
was singing songs of Africa
and working under lash and lock
and yoke the white man slaver set
the child in England shivered

Silently as Dada died or Mama died
she moved to separation from her own
became a Parish burden picking oakum
was sold to northern mills in groups of slaves
locked inside forbidding winter temples
stocking dross the Parish sent away

When your great-great-Grandmother
sold by stronger tribes in Africa
to make them rich and build their acres
to feed the rich man's people hunger
passing cramped across the ocean
watching daily deaths - or hourly

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Grandma's Treasure Box

Each of us
when we reached 14
would make the Visit to

Grandmothers house
to see what was inside
her Treasure Box;

the Family Treasure Box
where each year
one of us
got to see
what she had
hidden there..

My Dad had been;
my older brother
had been
and now it was my turn
to see that part of

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