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poem for my grandfather

June 16, 2008

my grandfather the deep sea diver

my grandfather the deep sea diver
wore a heavy helmut he made
from a water heater
he kept it in his wine cellar
my aunt stole it from my mother

many years ago one day under sea
he walked around and around a rock
he heard my grandmother call and call
impatient he returned to her
gasping for air on the dock

he went to the Galapagos
diver on the first scientific expeditions
their eyes their ears undersea
he brought up creatures of interest
told stories of where how he found them

they put his name on the paper
a graduate of eighth grade
manny paquette
my grandfather
deep sea diver

undersea story teller
i knew you best frail
you taught me how to grow
your tomatoes for you
to work smart not hard

you dreamt of me once
taking care of your land
i am here still
doing your work

(It’s Fathers Day here and after seeing this image from my cat lulu I’m feeling nostaligic. For what I’m not sure. For other poem narratives, go to readwritepoem; for other poems take a ride on the poetry train. To get a copy of this image on a card, or for other cool handmade cards, check out my cat lulu’s esty shop!)

5 Comments leave one →
  1. checkash permalink
    June 16, 2008 5:29 am


    i miss you

  2. June 16, 2008 6:16 am

    hey did you see the post about the conceptual poetry symp being on line and in particular jonathan stalling’s presentation? you should definitely check it out

  3. ken permalink
    June 16, 2008 11:32 pm

    Hey Gwendolyn,

    A lovely poem about Manny. I miss all of your grandparents and their many tales. Such rich roots your storytelling grows from, and a lovely way to honor his memory.

    Keep up the tender and insightful work.


  4. June 17, 2008 5:03 pm

    Nice, a wonderful story about an eclectic man. I’ve never known a deep sea diver, funny how his helmut was passed around among the women. Interesting read.

  5. June 18, 2008 3:50 am

    Interesting observation, mariachristina! he had daughters, no sons although he hoped; one daughter had 2 daughters, the other 2 daughters and a son. i hope it goes back to the wine cellar one day; i think he would like it to be kept there, and he wants me to be there–one day we hope to build a house next to the one he built.

    and ken, thanks so much for dropping by! and thank you for the sweet comments. i miss your mom so much…your family has so much love; i always appreciated that.

    glad you, becca and lulu made it through the fire!

    ml, g

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