White Moon Rising

Spent the day with my grandson,

took him to the baseball game

and showed him how they play over here;

Here, where it’s not cricket and cream teas,

but hot dogs, coke and dusty diamonds.

Taught him all the words that frame the game

and that made him sound cool when he spoke them,

and the other kids looked at him and smiled

like they understood, like he was one of us.

We walked up the hillside, behind second base

where the grass is left to grow tall,

and I showed him how to pull a straw, suck on it

and chew the end, getting all the sweet goodness out,

letting the wispy fronds hang down like a half-woken flag,

too hot and too humid to raise itself and wave.

Bought him a piece of bubble gum and watched him chew, 

saying with a wink, it might be best not to tell your Mummy

about this, seeing as she pays the dentist bills,

and then I showed him how to blow a bubble

and slap that darned gum all over his face.

And we each took a blade of grassleaf and I showed him

how to hold it – real taut – between his thumbs

and keep them stood straight together, side by side,

and we blew until the screeching whistles made us jump,

and then his sounded like one of his Daddy’s farts.

Boy, you should ha’ seen his smile.

I could have canned his giggle and kept it

for cheering me up on lonely days.

When he stood up, leaned over and spit,

just like the pitcher and the other big boys,

I suggested that was one habit he might not want

to bring home to England from America.

They wouldn’t think it was too cool over there,

and he could even get arrested for doing it in public.

His eyes grew big and round, wondering if I was just

‘pulling his leg,’ another american turn of phrase,

but I didn’t see him spit anymore, and he sort of stared

under heavy, shaded brows every time he saw

one of those boys lean over and spit, as if

he was trying to figure out for himself why

they kept committing crimes in public.

I hoped I wasn’t confusing him too much.

After the long, hot day that passed in record time,

and after he turned the bath water brown,

I wrapped him up in a fluffy big towel,

held him on my lap, sitting on the porch rocker

and we sang the take me out to the ballgame song,

and his eyelids started to hang heavy, and I thought

I’d better get him inside and put his pj’s on,

before he’s too heavy with sleep to carry.

But then his eyes opened wide; he squirmed

and pulled his clean arm out of the towel wrappings.

He looked up into the sky, a sky that wasn’t quite sure

if it was finished for the day, cause it was still hanging on to the blue,

and the moon was rising up like it had places to go tonight,

and my grandson pointed to it, and he said,

“Look, Grannie Cindy, there’s a fly ball!”

Submitted to:

Thursday Poets Rally http://thursdaypoetsrallypoetry.blogspot.com/



Filed under Fiction, Poetry, Uncategorized

47 responses to “White Moon Rising

  1. Awwwww…. this was the sweeeetest granny poem ever!!! I went back to my childhood when my gran used to do similar things.. and…the memories are so lovely!
    Dang! I miss her!
    A beautiful poem.. you’ll never be lonely with such amazing thoughts and memories! trust me on that!

  2. This brought back such beautiful memories for me too…I had goose bumps reading this!! Awesome my friend x

    • I was inspired by the work of constantpoet (see my blogroll) to write this using the old woman’s voice; it feels really natural to my ear – the voices I grew up hearing around me, though I don’t speak it, (much). Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for the comments

  3. My turn to get all choked up. What an absolutely sweet memory, put down with openness and authenticity. So very, very sweet. You captured a kind of day that most parents and grandparents have had, one of those golden moments that you savor when the child is grown and those days of innocence are gone. Thank you!

    • Thank you so much. Especially for the authenticity – that’s the word I was looking for to describe how your stuff felt to me, and the word of what I want my poetry to achieve – hell, all my writing to achieve.

  4. Barbara Rodgers

    What a delightful grandson you have and you must be the coolest grandmother ever! What a fantastic day! Some day your grandson will smile when he reads this poem and bask in the warm memories of his special time with Grannie…

    • He lives in a magical place, thousands of miles away, so when I write these poems with him and me together, they are often fictional – I write as a sort of fantasy grannie. I see my grandchildren about once every year or two, always in England. I would dearly love to bring them over here, but I can’t, so sometimes I write stories or poems about them as if they were over here. I imagine what would happen and what they would say and do. This poem was one of those fantasy moments. Still, I believe they are built upon a solid core of truth – the love between grandparents and their precious grandkids.

  5. this is so fitting, I go to my son’s baseball games two days a week now.

    the title is lovely, very passionate and mind blowing sentiments…

    Happy Rally.

  6. awww what a lovely day and building sweet memories is always the best!
    Enjoy the rally!


  7. A day well spent with childhood for company– enjoyed this beautiful relationship and its sweetness .Wish I had this Granny to call as my own!

    • Awh, that’s so sweet. Thank you! If I could, I would be glad to be your Grannie too. I never had a grandmother, and that gave me the opportunity to dream what kind of a Grannie I would love to be.

  8. A deceptively simple picture that is full of poetic gems.

  9. A.B. Thomas

    A lovely rememberance put into a great flow!

    • Thanks, Anthony. Alas, the ‘remembrance’ is fiction. Separated by oceans of miles, sometimes I like to invent a day that we spend together, and I send it to him to read, grateful that we get to meet by mind and spirit if not in person.

  10. Ahh, I loved this. Brought back so many wonderful memories and made me long for younger years and summers past. If this is a true story, what wonderful memories you have given your grandson. Beautiful!

  11. Sounds like a beautiful and perfect day!

    • Perfection happens when we slow down and relish the moment by diving into it. Instead of glossing over it with a lable by saying, “oh this is a beautiful moment,” I try looking at the way the willow frond shadows dance on the wall, then fade away and come back again, knowing that all the while, the clouds are shuttering the sun and making those willow shadows, just as a child makes animal shadows on the wall using their hands and a flashlight.

  12. I really really enjoyed that! There is so much in there, whispers about culture and differences, and grandparent-child relations, and the events that shape our small minds as we grow…..wonderful stuff. Thanks for sharing it!

    • Thanks Kenny; So often, when writing on a simple theme, I find a world of byways inside. Using a child to explore something I take for granted can be a really good way to stimulate the writing of multi-layered poem, without conscious effort. I really appreciate your enthusiasm – thanks!

  13. What a lovely memory – thanks for sharing!

  14. Iris D

    Take me out to the ballgame. What a precious memory and glad you shared it with us. Great crafting of this portrait of you and your grandson. I loved it.


    • Thanks, Iris! my favorite part of the “portrait” was holding his clean, sleepy body in that big fluffy towel. When I go to England, and the kids have a bath, they get all cuddly and want to have a story read to them. This is one of my favorite times. My daughter and I climb into the big bed and the kids crawl in all around us and we read stories, passing on from one generation to the next, something I remember my mother doing with me.

  15. beautiful poem.

    It is sometimes in such small moments that we discover of how blessed and beautiful life is.

    thank you for sharing it with us.

  16. Judging by the number of comments your poem generated, it appears to me that your “authenticity” got us all. It kept me there line after line.

  17. Really lovely. You captured it all so vividly.

  18. What a beautiful story, I thoroughly enjoyed this read…:)

  19. What a lovely poem. Heartwarming, thanks so much.

    I loved these lines. Made me remember how I wanted to do the same, when my 4 year old cousin came home.

    Boy, you should ha’ seen his smile.
    I could have canned his giggle and kept it
    for cheering me up on lonely days.

    • Thank you for reminding me of this line; it felt good when I wrote it, and it feels good reading it again. I’m so glad you took pleasure in your memory as well. Thank you for stopping by.

  20. This is so sweet. A child’s smile can be medicinal.

  21. There is so much joy and genuineness in this poem. I sincerely enjoyed it. Wonderful.

  22. Beautiful heart-warming story =)

  23. I enjoyed reading this so much, and it brought back some really great memories. It also gave me a few smiles, and a couple of out loud giggles. I especially love (and can relate to) this wonderful thought:

    I could have canned his giggle and kept it
    for cheering me up on lonely days.

    Well done.

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