Poetry

A Not So Idyll Idyll (Long Ago in West Virginia)

I only visited
my paternal grandfather
once
A man who mistreated my dad
passed him around to
relatives houses
My mother insisted on the visit
I don’t know why
I was around nine at the time
sitting in the front room
The special room
that was not often used
in their little West Virginia
farmhouse and most of what
I recall is how dark it was
And small
And a smell – mothballs?
And how tall my grandfather
looked entering the room
Imposing
Backlit by the bright
kitchen light behind him
and a mantle clock
Tick tock
Tick tock
Tick tock
and it was the only
sound on the face
of God’s green earth

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