Grandmother's China

        It is just a china dinner plate
        that I hang on my wall
        But oh, the memories
        it helps me to recall.

        I see the bleak old homestead
        where grandpa brought his wife
        The tall two story building
        they called home in later life.

        It sat in prairie grasses
        with sagebrush all around
        In bleak and barren sand-hill soil;
        scant produce there was found.

I see the unfinished attic
where we were put to bed
All cozy warm and snuggled
deep in Grandma's feather bed.

A woodpecker had pecked a hole
in the gable And in the
middle of the night
an old owl sat and questioned
"Whooo? Whooo?"
That gave us quite a fright.

I sat in Grandma's kitchen
upon a swivel stool
And watched her bake
her pies and cakes
before I started school.

        She sat the table for Grandpa
        with pride and loving care-
        His favorite cup, his special plate,
        and his own Captain"s chair.

        I remember on Grandpa's birthday
        folks came from all around.
        Aunts, uncles and distant cousins
        at the table could be found.

        I was privileged to set the table.
        How proud I was to place
        The rosebud plates and sauce dishes,
        cup and saucers at each place

        And then above each plate,
        the very last of all
        The little "dog dishes" for the bones,
        shaped like a half-moon small.

The birthday cake sat on a stand,
the centerpiece for show
And everyone admired it as
we watched the candles glow.

Now Grandpa's gone so long ago
he died in forty-two.
Grandma reached her ninety first year
before her life was through.

        The old house on the homestead
        was since destroyed by fire;
        And there is little left of all
        the earthly things they did acquire.

        But it all comes alive again
        as I look on turns of fate
        As I look upon the rosebuds
        of Grandma's China plate.

Janice Weeks, Chamberlin, Hankins, Rogers