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All the Wonders

  • betharichardson

The Color of Memory

I wait each spring,

watching the buds grow

on Grandpa's peony,

flown from Oklahoma to Tennessee, 

tucked in a plastic grocery bag

when I came home from his funeral.


These fuchsia petals,

these golden stamens,

these rich green leaves,

are the colors of memory.


Grandpa carrying in a bucket

of yellow sweet corn,

giant red tomatoes,

and fuzzy green okra.


Grandpa planting in black earth,

Oklahoma red clay

coaxed into fertile soil

by years of care and compost.


Grandpa in crimson on game day,

in dark suit on Sunday morning,

in carpenter khaki off to work.


Grandpa in my heart, in my mind.

Grandpa love, Grandpa wisdom.

Grandpa always present, steady

like the peony bloom

that opens every spring.


Thank you, Grandpa.

Thank you, memory.

Thank you, Creator.

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