A POEM! My grandma was one of the strongest women I've ever known and also one of the scariest. And also one of the smartest. And I can remember doing jazzercise with her after school but I can barely remember her voice...
"When I was eight my Grandma moved into my house and took over my room and she would also always make me do my homework before watching TV and she always told me to stand up straight and to never depend on some guy for money and then she told me that one day I would wish I listened to her more and that my hair was dry and frizzy - so I started referring to her as the meanest Grandma ever" or A poem for my Saw Saw
She keeps secrets like a stone wall – forever standing – chipped away only by wind and rain or the heartless stomping feet of men to battle. And she says “you cannot break me” and she sings “we will not break.” And she mumbles loudly and sighs discretely and I roll my eyes and stare into the lights of the television.
What if one day she were to die, just go to sleep and never wake up.
What if she went walking into the street and some careless, empty college student slammed into her with his car and she went flying through the air and landed at my feet with a soft, muffled thud. (You would wish you paid more attention, that you learned to listen, that's what.)
Who else (but me) would dare to think “Grandma, I am not that lucky.”
You will live a long, stone life, chipped away only by wind and rain
because even the stomping of heartless men has never broken you.
9/19/2012 05:45:55 pm
As much as I loved her, she scared me, too. She always made sure we toed the line. In spite of it all, she spent a lot of her years helping lots of "kids" onto the right path and keeping them there. She also accompanied Viv on many of her traveling gigs. I learned that a lot of her gruffness came from caring and trying to help us in the only way she knew how. I also remember the earlier times when Auntie Billy and Uncle Leslie shared trips, their home and what ever they had with the nieces and nephews. I remember their laughs when we were having fun. (5 of us girls in the backseat of the car on our way to Hoopa via San Francisco and chinese food. 100 degrees out and our feet stuck out the car windows on both sides). Thanks for the memories.
Your comment will be posted after it is approved.
Leave a Reply.
Cutcha Risling Baldy is an Associate Professor and Department Chair of Native American Studies at Humboldt State University. She received her PhD in Native American Studies from the University of California, Davis. She is also a writer, mother, volunteer Executive Director for the Native Women's Collective and is currently re-watching My Name is Earl...
(5) Top Posts
On telling Native people to just "get over it" or why I teach about the Walking Dead in my Native Studies classes... *Spoiler Alert!*
Hokay -- In which I lead a presentation on what happens when you Google "Native American Women" and critically analyze the images or "Hupas be like dang where'd you get that dentalium cape girl? Showing off all your money! PS: Suck it Victorias Secret"
In which we establish that there was a genocide against Native Americans, yes there was, it was genocide, yes or this is why I teach Native Studies part 3 million
5 Reasons I Wear "Indian" Jewelry or Hupas...we been bling-blingin' since Year 1
Pope Francis decides to make Father Junipero Serra a saint or In Which I Tell Pope Francis he needs to take a Native Studies class like stat
I need to read more Native blogs!
A few that I read...