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"Grandma Glenna" and "First Niece": Two Family-Themed Poems

Updated on March 25, 2017

I was elated while waiting for my first niece to be born. Since I had two nieces before the two nephews arrived, this was a moment. Also, I am easily fascinated by the subject of personality, and therefore I wondered what kind of personality this little girl would have. Despite having a few months where she was calm as they come, she is now a vivacious, curious, and outgoing little girl. When I wrote this poem I thought about the many ways in which she could surprise us with her interests, abilities, and personal preferences. Yet she is certainly one of us, and this is reassuring. It's reassuring to know she is knitted into the family fold no matter where and how she may diverge otherwise.


First Niece

Nameless still, you could be anything:

a professional singer; a microbiologist

working in Australia; the mother of five

vivacious children on a ranch in Wyoming;

a star athlete with a memory for numbers;

or even a peaceful and quiet creature who

marvels silently at her opinionated relatives

during family gatherings.

You will be ingrown around us like the

roots of a tree; this fate you cannot escape.

But the rest of you--your stripes,

so to speak--is unknown.

Please delight and astound us all with

every unveiling.

My Grandma Glenna has exerted an enormous influence on my life. You can read more about her in my hub about the life lessons I have learned from her. Over the years I've been amazed by the many personality traits I have seemingly inherited from her. These range from my creative leanings to our unyielding interest in other people. My dad has even claimed that Grandma Glenna and I walked similarly. This poem is an attempt to better explain the particulars of our relationship.


Grandma Glenna

She reminds me of inheritances, both tangible

and otherwise: journals promised after she passes into

the great unknown, or, of the here and now, the

tangle of shared personality traits wedged between

us like a needy child who insists on being

attended to by both parties.

She is not a mirror, but more a piece of glass with

sharp edges to define where we diverge,

and the silky surface of commanility upon

which we meet and retain our bearings.


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    • Julie K Henderson profile image

      Julie K Henderson 2 years ago

      Thank you for commenting. I am pleased you enjoyed the poems.

    • profile image

      Lee Cloak 2 years ago

      A beautiful poetic tribute, very well done, thanks for sharing this delightful hub, voted up , Lee

    • PoetwoPoem profile image

      Rudy Lopez 2 years ago from Dallas

      Thank you for sharing this hub, It was very beautiful.

    • Julie K Henderson profile image

      Julie K Henderson 2 years ago

      Thank you very much.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Lovely poems for your neice and grandma. Well done.