Thoughts of my Grandfather;
He was a quiet man.
Work was his vocation and recreation.
I spent a lot of time at their place in my early, his latter years.
Seems Grampa always had chores that filled his waking hours.
I was his shadow.
He wore coveralls most days, and always sported an old grey fedora.
His high cut oxfords made a shuffling sound as he walked. Parkinson’s was having it’s way with his system.
We’d dine on a bowl of hominy together in the country kitchen.
As the midday sun danced on the table through the window from between the limbs of the giant firs, I’d watch his massive hand struggle to keep his corn on the shaking spoon.
In between chores, and my naps, he’d sit in the old padded rocker and thumb through a photo album while I stood at his side.
‘The dapple was Molly and the grey was Dixie’, pointing to the work horse team he knew so well.
Seemed Grampa had a couple soft balls tucked in his upper shirt sleeves. He was a compact man at five nine, but stout, bull neck, thick arms.
I knew him in his lesser years, keeping his meaning to life by doing small jobs.
Things like sharpening the hoes with rasps, feeding the chickens, gathering eggs, or lubing the tractor.
He cut down a hoe to my size, and all three of us hoed acres of strawberries.
I saw him laugh once.
He was a proud man, brought down and humbled by an untreatable disease, but keeping his misery within.
Dad says he was hard boiled in his younger years, and short on patience.
I knew him as a much different man.
One time I peered through a cracked door to his study. He was on his hands and knees, talking to his Lord, no longer able to just kneel.
His bible was quite worn.
Dad gave to it me a few years ago.
I leant it to him at Christmas.
I’ll get it back pretty soon.
I think of times then and times now.
What a difference in pace, in conviction, in the shear enjoyment and satisfaction of endurance in simple living.
I see my grandkids give me an occasional glance of admiration, but nothing like the revered awe I had of him.
He died when I was ten.
I can still hear the shuffle of his feet, but it’s mine that echo his stride now.
Enough of this.
I’ve got chores to do before I sleep.
Chores to do before I sleep.