Praying For Grandfather

We will pray for grandfather,

she said

in the hope that he will develop a sense of humour.

And we will pray that he becomes less tired.
He has been tired, you know,
for all of his life.

she smiled as she said it
and reclaimed a stitch that had fallen
rocking to the cadence of her own speech
and the clacking rhythm of the needles

It is difficult to be the man of the household…

she was speaking almost to herself
as though in a reverie with the rest of us forgotten

… so much burden and responsibility,
for the earning of the money, the making of decisions
and having to stay aloof to bear failures and mishaps.

To stifle the questions that are unbecoming
when directed to the man.

We will pray grandfather recovers from his tiredness,

she said

and pray that he does not need to be so aloof
to avoid having to explain the shortfall
in the household accounts that worsened last Saturday,
and quite a few Saturdays before.

Why, even I
may recover a sense of humour …

and with that her smile broadened
and there was a notable gleam in her eyes
as though she’d said a wickedly delicious thing
as she rocked and knitted

© Frank Prem, 2001

Featured in Map of Austin Poetry (MAP) #186-1, June 2001 (Not sure if MAP is still going, probably not)

6 thoughts on “Praying For Grandfather

    • Thaks Anita.

      I was recalling this moment to Leanne this morning and remembering how straight laced the grandfather appeared, and how sharp and pithy the grandmother was. There must have been some rowdy moments behind the scenes, especially after Saturdays.



      Liked by 1 person

      • My granddad was quiet, and would turn and laugh to me when she shouted for him ro do anything or if he said ‘bugger’, that was the extent of it but she would never swear…except she had this thing about the tallboy and kept calling it the bumboy, back then was harmless – then she’d say ‘bugger!’ too at her mistake…and blame my granddad. .

        Liked by 1 person

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