We Keep

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Mahalia Ellison
Professor Starros
English 26
We Keep
By Mahalia Ellison


Grandma sits on the porch
Rocking back and forth in her chair
A nod to the sky.
She looks out ahead, 
The grass a slave to the wind.

Me and my sisters play around the porch.
Mable has rope tied to a sugar maple, 
Spinning it.
One, two, three! I jump in,
Her hair, my hair, weaved like snakes’ tails
Coiled on our heads, 
Slithering down our necks.

Grandma watch us, 
Quiet, smile fading.
“I never jump into no rope,” she say.
“Ain’t no rope tied to trees for fun 
When I was a youngin’.” 

Mable keep spinning.

Abby pick an apple from our apple tree
One bite a relief 
from the blanket of summer heat.
Grandma say, “Don’t go pickin’ no apples 
From Mr. Johnson’s tree!
He got a gun in his garage
And a noose in his Thunderbird!”

Abby keep eating. 

‘Round and ‘round,
Grandma watches the rope spin,
Waiting for the noose. 



“Them days’ gone,” Abby tell her.
But Grandma sit on the porch,
Stuck in memory,

Mable keep spinning,
Abby keep eating, 
We keep living 
Like them days really gone. 

But somewhere, 
Mr. Johnson got a gun in his garage,
And a noose in his Thunderbird. 









Submitted: September 30, 2018

© Copyright 2021 ceaselessmind. All rights reserved.

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