A house filled with

Curling wisps of

Cigarette smoke,

Scattered papers

And pencils, 

Paints and brushes

Littered across

The dining room

Table, steaming

Mug of coffee set

In front of him 

As he works on 

His next big project,

Eyes smiling from

Behind his old, worn

Glasses, expaining

How to draw perspectives, 

Showing how shading 

Is done.


Curled up on the couch,

Trying to draw his

Dog, a springer spaniel,

Who lies on a plaid 

Blanket next to me,

Staring mournfully 

At the squirrels outside,

His tail whipping against

My leg as I reach over

And scratch his ears.


In the shed in the back,

I learned how to carve,

How to make things

Come to life from

A block of wood,

Leafed through old

Art books for 

Inspiration, tried

To learn how to 

Do metalwork

But was told I

Was too young.

I might have pouted.


He taught me the

Important stuff.

How to see the world

For what it is,

And for what it could be. 

I learned from him 

Alternating perspectives

On people, and also



In truth,

He was more of a father

Than mine ever was.



Author's Notes/Comments: 

Tribute piece for my grandfather, who is, sadly, no longer among the living.

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allets's picture


Are about time
that is why
they have clocks
named after them.
Old men in the presence
of their child's child
assume airs
they have already
In spite of aching limbs
and rebellious knee
joints, they pass on
the art of living
by example
and in whispers.
Lady A