My Granddad

By Zachary Level Mustaine

Updated: 2009-09-26

  1. "the best answer," he said
  2. he could give was
  3. "I got up this morning"
  4. he's been saying that since November 29th
  5. because on November 28th
  6. the one who he had been waking up with
  7. every morning since my daddy was born
  8. since he got home from the war
  9. since before even that
  10. the one who he loved
  11. beside him all those years
  12. didn't get up
  13. he did.
  14. she never would again.
  16. so he sits quietly looking at a weeping cherry tree
  17. he planted in her garden. the garden she would sleep in
  18. and he reads the paper and occasionally
  19. glances when no one is around
  20. at the cold permanent stone
  21. and a tear swells up and runs
  22. down the cracks in his face
  23. down his favorite shirt.
  24. and splotches on the paper.
  25. smudging the statistics of the sports section.
  27. all the while he is remembering
  28. how they met
  29. at a party before he was shipped out to Europe
  30. before his knees were sore. before he started coaching
  31. and she started teaching,
  32. and they lived in a coal mining town. in virginia
  33. He remembers seeing her playing the piano at a party
  34. as people called out songs
  35. he remembers watching the fireworks with her on a hill
  36. on a warm summer night. holding hands.
  37. kissing.
  39. now he can hear
  40. the one I love
  41. play the old piano
  42. in the house they shared
  43. "she plays just like her"
  44. It brings another small tear to his eye
  45. but he's smiling
  46. humming a different song
  47. one he heard many many years ago
  48. its quiet when she finishes
  49. and then he breaks the silence