Michael George

Up In Grandma’s Attic

Up in Grandma’s attic
The smell is mysterious, unique
The musty flavor is deceitful
An old smell, but crisp, as if the air is ancient.
Inhale and get a taste of the living memories.
So much history is amidst this air
The quality of the past makes the scent so strong
Wandering the attic, finding a thick wood trunk
Metal locks and engravings, rusty, colors fading
Carved out of the wood, some letters still visible: Poland/America, 1849
Reaching with tips of fingers to feel the letters…

The ship is dark and damp
One hand clings to her mother, the other to her belongings
A trunk, carrying everything she’s bringing to the new world
A solitary chest, tough and capable
Loaded tight, heavier than she is
As the ship rocks back and forth across the cold Atlantic…
Heavy and strong to keep the smell inside
Open the lock and lift the lid
Grand furs and fancy felt hats
Black dresses and shawls
Jewelry that still shines
Paintings, books, and warm blankets
Locked inside, so old they seem nearly dead
But with heritage so strong they live forever
Passed on to a future generation
The scent will linger, endure


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