Swedish Raven

Long braided tresses form a twisted garland
of coal black hair, adorning the nape of her neck,
while a fine silken web of netting
forms the final cap on her dark raven crown,
so gently laced with silver.
Scandinavian olive skin, weathered from the sun,
provides the warmth of a leather matting
gracefully framing the softness of her smile.
The curve of her aging Swedish spine
magnifies her slightness of height while
her steps shuffle slowly, in shoes
that have slowly molded themselves
around the deformities of her feet.

Work worn hands reach into overstuffed cupboards,
holding life’s mementos saved from many days past,
and her eyes sparkle as she relays to wide-eyed listeners
the random memories that flow from the stories they hold.
Treasure hunts are led through her humble storage rooms
created of necessity from long abandoned transports.
Hand sewn garments of childhood days rest retired,
faded and hanging limp, on large and rusty nails.
Spinning wheel of former days sits silent,
no more singing that mournful weaver’s song.

Her christened name was Bertha,
Mrs. Nelson she became, as later she was wed,
but Grandma was the sacred designation
that she cherished. Borne with love and honor,
from all who laid that claim to her, she gracefully received.

Published in: on October 21, 2009 at 5:53 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. A tribute written in memory of my maternal grandmother, Bertha Nelson.


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