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Grandfather's Promise

By Hannah Brewer

  1. Untitled
    By Brittany Ahn
​  Hands aching, he continued his work
Each back and forth motion caused his wrist to jerk
He carved at the wood relentlessly with passion
As he craved to create the work of a craftsman
He had been carving wood for his family his whole life,
His best friend had always been his knife.
But as he reached old age he came to realize
Not once has he carved something for his grandkids to personalize
So with an array of tools and determination,
He pieced individual blocks together with coordination.
A unicorn for one granddaughter, a tiger for his grandson,
And a mirror frame for his second granddaughter where she could tie her bun.
But by the time these were done, his bones began to ache
“I cant stop now,” he said, “I’ve got one left to make!”
He thought of what he could make for the little girl who came last 
And upon thinking of her, his mind went to the past
He remembered her running through the park, doll in hand,
And immediately carved two thin bands
Each would serve as a piece to the miniature swing he would create
That she could set her doll in as she played, the two could relate.
But as he began to carve the last piece, his body began to shake
And he collapsed upon the floor, allowing the swing to fall and break.
Christmas was quickly approaching, but he couldn’t muster the strength
And the aches of his body made each saw seem double its actual length
So when Christmas came, he only had 3 gifts to give
And the fourth grandchild sat in dismay with thoughts that were tentative.
Her grandfather sat from afar with a look of pity and shame
And tears welled in his eyes when he tried to explain
He could never forget about her gift, he simply was weak
And he promised that he’d have her gift ready by next week.
Joy overcame her features and she gave him a squeeze,
And her grandfather’s heart sunk straight to his knees.
For he knew that he had a made a promise he could not keep,
Every step he took caused his bones to subtly creak.
After numerous tries and pieces of shattered wood,
He wrapped each component up the best he could.
Alongside the ruins of his attempts, he left a sorrowful letter
That included an explanation of his trials and a sketch of what could’ve been better
Than just the lonely scraps of wood he left behind
And once he had finished that, his bones began to unwind.