Friday, April 10, 2015

Blind Grandpa -- Day 10 of NaPoWriMo 2015

Daniel F. Beatty Co., Washington, NJ (Advertisement)
           Public Domain (Commons.Wikipedia)

Dear Blind Grandpa

My dearest grandfather, great-grandfather 
We kids have always called you Blind Grandpa

This note to you today will be for me
No one left to ask the things I don't know

My memory has you in the kitchen
sitting at your old pump organ, playing

Playing beautiful music that wafted
through the house for all to enjoy or not

I don't remember your playing with me,
Ever.  Just of you sitting there playing

Not one song of yours do I remember
I only know what happened when you died

Uncle Howard got your organ, oh good
My aunt could play it now.  Didn't happen

Uncle Howard cut it up, all apart
We kids played with the knobs and the pieces

Who was your wife, I have long forgotten
I don't remember ever seeing her

My sister knows, she has it all charted
We cousins numbered nine, not all you knew

Your children have died, their children as well
Now our generation's starting to die

Every boy of your family turned blind
Passed down to all the men, my turn is next

I have been wondering more, who you were
No one is left to tell, no pictures here

In my mind is you at your pump organ
Playing, that's all.  And pretty organ knobs
_ _ _

Lower Photo and Poem Copyright
© 2015 Jimmiehov
All Rights Reserved
 - The upper photo is from Wikipedia, of a 1882 Beatty Parlor Organ selling for $50. [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pump_organ#/media/File:Beatty%27s_Parlor_Organ_ad_1882.jpg ] Blind Grandpa would have been an adult by then, he died in the 1930's.  More likely he bought a used organ.
 
 - Today I am linked with Mama Zen
, both for Day 10 of National Poem Writing Month
 - Her instructions are:  "Think about your ancestors.  Think about your future descendants. Write a letter to either or both.  Word count is wide open." (She usually limits us to 55 words.)

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13 Comments:

At Friday, April 10, 2015 12:41:00 PM, Blogger Hannah said...

Such wonderful memories of the organ, Jim...great write!

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 12:58:00 PM, Blogger Sanaa Rizvi said...

A very beautiful tribute to your dear grandpa :)
Love the sentiments that you have portrayed in this piece :D

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 3:18:00 PM, Blogger Brittany said...

Really like this piece, and it's sad that the organ was ripped up, the thing you remember most about him.

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 5:29:00 PM, Blogger Mama Zen said...

This made me sad, Jim. Fine write.

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 5:41:00 PM, Blogger Sherry Blue Sky said...

An organ for fifty dollars - which must have been like five hundred is to us, back then. Horrifying that your uncle cut it to pieces. And that every boy went blind. My grandma and my mom both lost most of their sight towards the end. My turn next, too. Already have cataracts. This was a poignant read, Jim and I really enjoyed it. I do love the old stories. Those were the days!

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 8:54:00 PM, Blogger Outlawyer said...

Boy, I hope not all of this is true--it is a very lovely poem, but I have lots of eye problems so really sympathize. Thanks. k.

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 10:59:00 PM, Blogger Susie Clevenger said...

So sad that something once so treasured became nothing but bits and pieces. Thanks for sharing your story with us.

 
At Friday, April 10, 2015 11:35:00 PM, Blogger Ella said...

Oh, the outlines of life~ The music, the memories-I do hope you are okay and not losing your sight~ His memory is a gift and I hope you can find out more!

 
At Saturday, April 11, 2015 1:51:00 AM, Blogger grapeling said...

he cut it up, huh? every family has its bumps ~

 
At Saturday, April 11, 2015 3:54:00 AM, Blogger Kerry O'Connor said...

At least one memory remains clear, and the dear blind grandpa has not been entirely forgotten.

 
At Saturday, April 11, 2015 4:18:00 AM, Blogger Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

A wonderful poem, and family story. I do hope you are not really fated to go blind!

 
At Saturday, April 11, 2015 7:21:00 AM, Blogger Gillena Cox said...

(◕‿◕。) the absolute child persona in which you recalled and retold,

my favourite lines "In my mind is you at your pump organ
Playing, that's all. And pretty organ knobs"

thanks for dropping by to read mine

much love...

 
At Saturday, April 11, 2015 12:47:00 PM, Blogger Other Mary said...

I love the opening with blind grandpa at the pipe organ. It's so sad when we lose the stories of our family hisotry. My dad was a wonderful storyteller, and I'm trying to pass all his stories along to my kids. It's difficult though, as I'm the only living child, so no siblings to remind me of what I forget. And, I too wish you the best with your eyesight.

 

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