Grandad – A poem

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self portrait of rob davie photographer and writer
self portrait

When I set up this blog I envisioned it as a general outlet for my creative side, not just photography. I deliberately started with photography as for a number of years that has been my primary creative outlet, but I am starting to write a little again so I think that the time is right to bring my poetry along for the ride.

The poem I am sharing today came from a realisation that our immediate ancestors are several people in one. They are heroes, collections of 60 or 70 or more years of experience. They know far more than I ever could at my age just through their living longer. Life IS knowledge to a certain degree, we are learning animals with prodigious memories and this allows us to become our lives as a sum of experience.

But they are also people. They are simple, complicated people with loves, hates, passions and humours. They pulled that girls pigtails, they fell off that bike even with stabilisers, they watched the boys play football and giggled with their friends behind their hands. They got their first job, spent their first wage on something frivolous, loved and lost many times over, or maybe just once.

They are still these people. They always will be. So this is a little cheeky celebration of that.


…and then there was
Vicious Verity
She’d have you over the end of the bed
And paddle you with a bedpan

I can still remember
Cold bronze…
Hot sting…

Grandad grins at this point,
gives me his sidelong
wink and that tip of his
head. Then
leans back in his wingback
And lets out a long, comfortable

Kid, you knew you were alive
when you spent a few hours, and
a week’s pay in that house.

Luscious Laura,
now there’s a pair!
Take your eyes out
from across the room, nipples
like football studs.

Grandad coughs as he laughs, the
Sixty years of Marlboro reds
exacting their true and final cost.
I laugh along with him, an honest grin
Splitting my face like my split feelings.

I pass him his Mackesons in payment
for more
tales of whores.

I hope you enjoy this piece, it has a little of the bittersweet about it which I hope reflects life in general.

I am going to be using my ‘self protrait’ (actually taken by my then girlfriend, now wife) to denote the posts that are writing orientated, be they prose or poetry, so look out for those if you enjoyed this.

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