stories about

the old days

when snow use to grow six feet tall

walking: a daily activity

getting up with the sun: habit


granny offers me tea

in a mason jar filled with ice

lemon slices jammed in

while mom separates my hair

into three sections

and begins to weave


sitting high on three big cushions

my body wiggles

against a yanking comb

till i am left with crooked thick braids

that dangle, heavy

on boney shoulders



always with a tribe

of grand-kids 
left in her care

while mothers worked

across the line 
in Detroit,

Soo Michigan factories

during the depression

and sent money on payday



a beautiful old lady

brown paper thin skin

rigid bear hands

with bulging veins

that my fingertips follow


a road map,

tells a story of





eyes blue

and milky

behind this layer

brown eyes blink back

ninety-one years

a glint of light

sparkles deep in the iris


between pursed lips

she blows on the harmonica

“roll out the barrel,

we’ll have a barrel of fun!”


granny step danced

in the kitchen





cleaned fish

better, faster than anyone

mother to many

granny to all


sat at a table

and welcomed you

into her modest house

with two rooms

that faced the main reserve road


when i sit

at a kitchen table now

granny’s voice whispers

speaking indian



Dedicated to my nokimis (granny), Ella Boyer (nee Niganigijig) originally from Wikwemikong Unceded Reserve, Manitoulin Island, Ontario. Married to Louis Boyer from Mississauga First Nation, Ontario. My nokimis is Odawa and my moshimis is Ojibway.

I’ve written so many granny poems that I keep going back to it as a theme of my writing. To me granny is everything. She passed on so much vital information that it’s a good source for me to access. And now when I write about granny, it’s from many grannies that I have met along the way. Meegwetch.


4 thoughts on “stories about

  1. When these hands of mine become rigid bear hands, I hope that you and I can visit and make tea for our grandkids ~ chatterring about the funs days of today.

    Thank you for this visual Vera.


    • hey mooshim, sounds like a plan. i will be saying, remember the time we… good memories kevin :o) it’s a long way off but it’s nice to think, dream of what lies ahead. who said getting older sucks? man, it’s awesome. i cherish every white hair, four so far. too funny. hai hai – meegwetch.


      • This is beautiful… these words written by Vera
        and the wonderful sentiment between 2 good friends, made my night . BTW Vera ONLY 4 – wow ….. i’m up to over 100 west coast silvers hugs & amp; love


        • well only 4 that i can see :o) storm and grace graze to see if they can find any but i have heredity on my side. barb is 71 now and still not fully grey or white.

          thanks for all your support leena. you’ve always been there to give me a nudge and sometimes a kick in the pants. you’re the best. love you :o)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s