Memories of you

Have begun to fade ever so slightly

I fear they’ll desert me entirely one day

So I remind myself

Birthday cards with a few dollars, more than you could afford

Letters in college that encouraged and reminded

Always began

“My Dearest Granddaughter”

I thought it old-fashioned then

Now I cherish those words

I read every single letter with joy, hidden but real

Perhaps my love of books came from you

You read voraciously

Stacks of books and magazines cluttered your house

You read your chapters in the Bible each night

How many “most chapters read” pins did you win?

Family meant everything to you

Yet you lived alone much of the time

Widowed before I was born

Raised two of your grandchildren

You set an example of independence

Though I wouldn’t recognize it for years

I reveled in your pride in my accomplishments

Drawers filled with mementos of your family’s successes

Cherished quietly, privately, and yet not so privately

You bore responsibility for your life

Made things work when they seemed desperate

You were stronger than it appeared

I see that now

Perhaps I should’ve appreciated you more then

As I do now

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