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Passions in Poetry

Grandpa Rocked

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Local Rebel
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since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


0 posted 03-13-2000 10:50 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to Submit your Poem to Passions  View IP for Local Rebel

He was a frail man
Rocked chair-bound
Under a folded quilt
All day
Parked beside a
Bed specially equipped
For him to drag himself
Into and out of

Police scanner
Scanning all day
All night
On the bedside table
He rocked
With white stubble
Adorning his face

The youngest of his youngest,
My grandfather
already an old man
By the time
we were introduced
By the time
I got my first grandpa kiss
on my cheek
With his unique twenty
kisses per second
grandchild kiss with
White stubble that tickled

We all shyed away
But couldn't wait
To see grandpa
And his pet canary
And his police scanner

Never watched television
Just listened to the scanner

Wouldn't play cards of any type
Because soldiers gambled for
Jesus' clothes

Rocked and listened
All day
All night
And kissed his grandchildren
With his white stubbled face
Painted in oil now and then
When he could hold a brush in his
Arthritis bent fingers

In youth a proprietor of hotels and
Restaurants he cooked
In the kitchen

With the ladies
He was dashing on
His horse he rode west
From West Virgina
Until the great depression
He was dashing

And then he was depressed
As lesser men threw themselves
From windows at the prospect
Of being penniless
But a man with hungry mouths
Didn't take the cowards way
Didn't think himself too good
To work with his hands
If thatís what it took
To feed four hungry children
And a wife

So he worked at this
And worked at that
And humbly became a servant
To those who still had some money

And a mansion

And he cooked
The French Chef
Son of French Chefs
And he walked from servants quarters
To the estate house
Every morning
To the kitchen
Where he commanded the crew
Of servants to the elite

Even though he worked
Four hungry mouths were hard to feed
On servants pay
And he snuck some groceries here
And there
When he ordered the food
For the estate
A little meat one day
Some bread the next
Some vegetables
Maybe some potatoes
But chicken, especially chicken
He practically invented fried chicken

And with a little help from the grocery boy,
Sometimes a little
cash
could even slip by
To help clothe four

Beancounters
Came to count the beans
One by one from every can and jar
To every cookie and spoon
And things just didn't add
up

So the estate owners were
Justifiably upset that
Someone had been taking
Their hard stolen money
from the kitchen of all places
It didn't matter that it was a minor
Amount because it's the principle

Isn't it always?

So he put on his stripes
And went to the pen
And left four hungry mouths
And a wife
And another surprise
Now there were five

A pregnant woman can slip
Just about anything
Under her dress
And even prison guards
Don't really want to insult
Her integrity by searching around that
Delicate area
At least not back then

So she slipped a dress
And a bonnet
Along side my mother
And went in to visit
The dashing young French Chef
In his stripes

And as the ladies all left
That visiting day
Nobody noticed
There was one extra

And grandpa rocked
A frail old man
Police scanner
Scanning all day
All night
On the bedside table
He rocked
With white stubble
Adorning his face

And listened rocking
All day
And all night
Until the day he died.






 Hate is a dead thing. Who of you would be a tomb? -Kahlil Gibran
© Copyright 2000 Local Rebel - All Rights Reserved
suthern
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Member Seraphic
since 07-29-99
Posts 20770
on the threshold of a dream


1 posted 03-13-2000 10:57 AM       View Profile for suthern   Email suthern   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for suthern

WOW!!!! This is superb, Rebel!!! You had me hooked from the first word... and I forgot to breathe... so of course I had to read faster and faster till at last my breath escaped with your grandpa. *S*
Balladeer
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Member Empyrean
since 06-05-99
Posts 26302
Ft. Lauderdale, Fl USA


2 posted 03-13-2000 11:17 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

This could be the greatest tribute to a person that I have ever read. An extremely intersesting man and the way you spun the tale made it so real in my eyes I could actually see the old fellow at every stage. Excellent work, rebel.
Marina
Member Elite
since 02-10-2000
Posts 2267
Pickering, Ontario


3 posted 03-13-2000 12:45 PM       View Profile for Marina   Email Marina   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Marina

Beautiful,absolutly beautiful!

Marina
Local Rebel
Member Ascendant
since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


4 posted 03-13-2000 03:24 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Thank you, those are some pretty powerful compliments there... I really appreciate it..
Denise
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since 08-22-99
Posts 23002


5 posted 03-13-2000 04:19 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Wow! What a wonderful grandpa you had! This is a fantastic tribute to him! Great writing!

Denise
Meadowmuse
Member Elite
since 12-27-1999
Posts 3317


6 posted 03-13-2000 04:31 PM       View Profile for Meadowmuse   Email Meadowmuse   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Meadowmuse's Home Page   View IP for Meadowmuse

Local Rebel, this is excellent writing and a captivating tale. Clever throughout, superb.

~ Claire
Martie
Moderator
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since 09-21-1999
Posts 28608
California


7 posted 03-13-2000 05:11 PM       View Profile for Martie   Email Martie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Martie's Home Page   View IP for Martie

Wonderful writing!!  I loved this story...it was captivating.  Bravo!
Poet deVine
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since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley


8 posted 03-13-2000 07:48 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

This is an incredible poem! I was enthralled! I hope this is true as I was rooting for your Great Grandfather! What an interesting, noble man!  ...thank you for sharing this with us!
Nan
Administrator
Member Seraphic
since 05-20-99
Posts 24426
Cape Cod Massachusetts USA


9 posted 03-13-2000 07:49 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

All right... I admit it, Reb.. I had to read this twice.. That's a really good thing..

This is AWESOME..
Marge Tindal
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since 11-06-1999
Posts 43042
Florida's Foreverly Shores


10 posted 03-13-2000 08:59 PM       View Profile for Marge Tindal   Email Marge Tindal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Marge Tindal's Home Page   View IP for Marge Tindal

Rebel~
You captured me in a spell that had me listening to the police scanner right up to the end.

Absolutely brilliant portrayal.
This poem about Grandpa ROCKED !
~*Marge*~


 ~*The pen of the poet never runs out of ink, as long as we breathe.*~
noles1@totcon.com

Local Rebel
Member Ascendant
since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


11 posted 03-14-2000 10:04 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Thanks to all for the many nice comments -- and yes tis true -- but my grandfather not great although he was great  
Local Rebel
Member Ascendant
since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


12 posted 03-14-2000 02:01 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

If I may be allowed one final comment... the sad part is/was...

my mother, aunts, and uncles grew up ashamed of him -- and carried that their entire lives.... they never saw the courage, the motives, the man.... I'm glad all of you could see him through my eyes
bboog
Member
since 02-29-2000
Posts 307
Valencia, California


13 posted 03-14-2000 02:18 PM       View Profile for bboog   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit bboog's Home Page   View IP for bboog

Local Rebel~ Interesting poem. Did your grandfather let his canary out of the cage? I don't know if he ever did, but after reading this poem the first time, I thought it kind of unusual that you would have the image of the escaped convict with his police scanner, and not have the canary walking about free. But that's just me. A flea-sized quibble- suggest that you describe his eyes. Perhaps they were bird-like or darting around? (It might coincide with the "bird-like" kisses) Just some things to think about.
best regards,
bboog
jbouder
Member Elite
since 09-18-99
Posts 2641
Whole Sort Of Genl Mish Mash


14 posted 03-14-2000 02:31 PM       View Profile for jbouder   Email jbouder   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jbouder

Rebel:

I think this is the best work of read of yours. Excellent work in weaving a touchingly personal story.

Jim
Local Rebel
Member Ascendant
since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


15 posted 03-14-2000 02:39 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Actually the door to the cage stayed open most of the time, the bird had free reign to fly about the apartment.  He would put the bird on his finger and tell him to excercise and it would flit and flutter it's wings... it preferred sticking around close by him...

your grandfather's eyes -- use that image...

thanks... bboog and jim
infinat3 sadn3ss
Member
since 02-14-2000
Posts 86
somerset england


16 posted 03-14-2000 02:55 PM       View Profile for infinat3 sadn3ss   Email infinat3 sadn3ss   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for infinat3 sadn3ss

thankyou for allowing me to imagine a grandfather . i never had the privilage or joy of having a grandfather and am truly greatful to you for explaining yours .He seemed a truly great man.
thanks
Corazon
Senior Member
since 02-02-2000
Posts 1301


17 posted 03-14-2000 03:12 PM       View Profile for Corazon   Email Corazon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Corazon

can't believe I had missed this one....really incredible writing....I didn't know my grandpa that well, but have a few excellent memories....thank you for letting us see this incredible man through your eyes
RainbowGirl
Member Elite
since 07-31-99
Posts 3167
United Kingdom


18 posted 03-15-2000 07:27 AM       View Profile for RainbowGirl   Email RainbowGirl   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit RainbowGirl's Home Page   View IP for RainbowGirl

This is so you sweetheart...

Big HUSG
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