The best grandma in the world.

I wrote this poem as part of my final project in my poetry class at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I turned it in on July 12, 1990. I had turned twenty-years-old seven days before. Today would have been Gram’s 96th birthday.


When I was sick, she used to take care of me
I’d lay on her big, green couch
She would cover me with my favorite blanket
It was big and furry, like the cats who laid on it
Gram would tuck the edges
around my body
so I wouldn’t get cold

I would watch Woody woodpecker
while she made me homemade chicken soup
Pennsylvania Dutch style – with big noodles
She always served it
in my Star Wars bowl

She’d hand me the bowl
And I could see the veins
In her soft, but calloused hands
they were the only things old
about her

We turned the TV off
She tells me about growing up
In the Depression
How poor her family was
having to add water to creamed corn
So all the kids could eat

She tells me how things are
So much the same
Blacks still live separately from whites
She leaves the room
And comes back with
Tea and Yoo-Hoo
And a lecture
another one on
How to treat everyone with respect

She smiles
letting me know the lecture is over
I ask her to read to me
I close my eyes and listen
to her soothing voice as I fall asleep to
β€œTo be, or not to be…”


Stream of Consciousness


Sweet Adalaide


  1. Judith Chaloupka

    Like stories I heard from my Grandma! Real but looked for positives and a little message at the same time.

  2. Leslie Jordan


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