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Grandpa's Chair - A Poem of Chilhood Memories

Happily married for over 30 years, John dated prior to that and has since watched and offered relationship advice to his four children.

grandpas-chair
grandpas-chair
Kerosene lamp

Kerosene lamp

grandpas-chair

Grandpa's Chair

by John Hansen © 2014


Most memories elude me,

Grandpa died when I was four.

In fact he died the very day,

My sister was being born.


Fondly what I do recall

Is his piercing blue eyed stare,

And his room above the tool shed

With his favourite rocking chair.


When we went to visit,

While Grandma still lived there,

I'd ask to sleep in Grandpa's room,

And rock upon his chair.


There was no electricity,

Just lamps of kerosene.

But the room it was so cosy

And the atmosphere serene.


History has engulfed those times,

But one memory's still there.

Whenever I smell kerosene,

I rock in Grandpa's chair.


A Brief History of the Rocking Chair

Benjamin Franklin is often credited with having invented the rocking chair, however historians have actually traced the rocking chair's origins to North America during the early 18th century, when Franklin was still a child. They were originally used in gardens and were just ordinary chairs with rockers attached. In 1725 early rocking chairs first appeared in England. The production of wicker rocking chairs reached its peak in America during the middle of the 18th century. These wicker rockers became famous for their craftsmanship and creative designs.

President John F. Kennedy who suffered with chronic back problems, was prescribed swimming and the use of a rocking chair by his physician. The President so enjoyed the rocker that he even took his chair on Air Force One when he traveled around the country and the world. He bought additional rockers for Camp David and for the Kennedy estates; and he gave them as gifts to friends, family, and heads of state. (source: Wikipedia)

Comments

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Sorry to hear you never got to know your grandparents ps. I am glad you enjoyed this poem though. Blessings to you.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Thanks for reading Kathleen. My grandfather died when I was four but these are the memories I still have. Never knew my other grandfather. My grandmothers died when I was about 20 and 30, so I did get to grow up with them thankfully. Glad you enjoyed this.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Thanks for your kind comment Phyllis. I am glad this poem brought back pleasant memories for you. The song "My Grandfather's Clock" seems to ring a bell. I will definitely look it up.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Thank you for reading and sharing Jackie. As writers I feel we have the tools to keep our dear loved ones alive or at least their memories and legacy through our writing. This is my attempt. I a glad it was successful. I called my Grandfather..Pa Jack. My dad was Pa Bert to my kids...and I am Pa John to my grandkids.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Thank you for reading and sharing Jackie. As writers I feel we have the tools to keep our dear loved ones alive or at least their memories and legacy through our writing. This is my attempt. I a glad it was successful. I called my Grandfather..Pa Jack. My dad was Pa Bert to my kids...and I am Pa John to my grandkids.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2014:

Thank you for reading and sharing Jackie. As writers I feel we have the tools to keep our dear loved ones alive or at least their memories and legacy through our writing. This is my attempt. I a glad it was successful. I called my Grandfather..Pa Jack. My dad was Pa Bert to my kids...and I am Pa John to my grandkids.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on July 28, 2014:

My grandparents had all died before I was born except my grandma who lived till I was four. So I have no such sweet memories as yours. Lovely piece indeed.

Angels are on the way to you ps

Kathleen Odenthal from Bridgewater on July 28, 2014:

This is great Jodah! Another fantastic and moving piece. My grandparents all died when I was young and I miss them so much

Phyllis Doyle Burns from High desert of Nevada. on July 28, 2014:

Jodah, I am surprised I missed this one. Thank you, Jackie, for sharing it.

Your poem, Jodah, is so beautiful and brings back memories of my Grandfather. I love the song by Butch -- it reminds me of a song my dear departed brother used to sing: "My Grandfather's Clock". Look it up if you have time, I know you will love it. Thanks for writing this poem. You always have something to say that touches my heart in a good way.

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on July 28, 2014:

Beautiful John to be able to take such a precious memory and turn it to prose. I have wonderful memories of my grandpa (I called Papaw) and this has inspired me to see what I can do to share some of those memories. Up and shared.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 29, 2014:

Thank you Gypsy,

I'm glad this poem brought back memories and touched your senses.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on May 29, 2014:

Wonderful memories. Made me feel like I could smell that kerosene and take a rock in grandpa's chair. Wonderful.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on March 05, 2014:

Thank you as always for your kind words DDE. I appreciate it.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on March 05, 2014:

Great writing and with a wonderful touch of words.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2014:

Thank you ologsinquito, Yes it's amazing the things that embed themselves in our memories. But all good.

ologsinquito from USA on February 12, 2014:

It's nice that you have some memories of your grandfather, even though they are distant ones.

chrisam01 from Los Angeles, California, USA on January 25, 2014:

Hi Jodah, I had to come by and visit some of your work. This piece especially resonates with me. I believe grandpas have a special place in people's hearts. Those of us lucky enough to have memories of our grandpa should cherish them. This invokes the sweetest of memories.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

Alicia, thanks for reading and your lovely comment.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on January 21, 2014:

This is a lovely poem, Jodah. The atmosphere and the memories are beautiful.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

Hey lever this, good to see a new name. Welcome to my hub and thanks for the kind comment. Let's hear it for grandpas!

Thank you Flourish. Glad it brought back fond memories of your grandpa. When I first read your comment I thought he called you "the crook" haha. I thought "what, she stole for him?" Then realised my mistake. I'm sure he loved your cooking.

FlourishAnyway from USA on January 21, 2014:

Fabulous. Makes me think of my own grandpa who could never remember my name and just called me "the cook" because that's what I'd do for him, only 10-12 years old myself.

Levertis Steele from Southern Clime on January 21, 2014:

What a heartwarming poem! Grandpa's are awesome.

Jane Arden on January 21, 2014:

Ha ha.. Pulling at the heart strings... but hey... you can go through a stage if you'd like LOL

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

I really are what Jane..pulling at the heart strings, or going through a stage..haha?

Jane Arden on January 21, 2014:

You really are!!!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

Haha Jackie, I seem to be doing that a bit lately. Must be a stage I'm gong through. Thanks :)

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on January 21, 2014:

Pulling the heartstrings again. Love it.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

Thank you very much WiccanSage for reading this poem and for your kind words. I appreciate it.

Mackenzie Sage Wright on January 21, 2014:

What a beautiful and touching tribute to your grandfather-- how very sweet. Beautiful hub.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 21, 2014:

Thank you ubanihijioke, I am pleased this poem brought back pleasant memories of your own Grandpa.

Alexander Thandi Ubani from Lagos on January 21, 2014:

Wow! you just reminded me of my Grandpa. I was so fond of him and your poem brought some of the memories back. Fantastic! your words created clear pictures of you rocking in your Grandpa's chair.

Good job!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you dear Faith, you are always so kind to me with your comments. I am pleased you enjoyed this and as always thanks for voting up and sharing.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on January 20, 2014:

Oh, what a beautifully written poem! Really good one here dear one.

Up and more and sharing.

Hugs, Faith Reaper

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Ms Dora, thank you for your kind compliment. Glad you enjoyed.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

It certainly is Blossom. Smell is the sense that often triggers my memory.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thanks for your sweet comment Mystic, I am glad you enjoyed this poem and it reminded you of your grandfather too.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you Ann, yes the senses are amazing how they trigger memories long past. I'm sure you have fond memories of your granddad too.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Yes cat it is, and amazing how often for me it's my sense of smell that is the trigger. Glad you enjoyed this poem, thanks for your comment.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thanks sallybea, I only knew one grandfather but only for a few years when very young, but still remember the rocking chair.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Hello pochinuk, It's interesting the things that spark a memory and transport us back to earlier days isn't it? Moth balls did it for you, kerosene for me. Glad this poem brought back some memories for you too. Thanks for commenting.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Hello pochinuk, It's interesting the things that spark a memory and transport us back to earlier days isn't it? Moth balls did it for you, kerosene for me. Glad this poem brought back some memories for you too. Thanks for commenting.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on January 20, 2014:

Beautiful memory loving preserved in poetry. Good job!

Bronwen Scott-Branagan from Victoria, Australia on January 20, 2014:

it's interesting how certain smells can be so evocative of memories of times past, isn't it?

MysticMoonlight on January 20, 2014:

Aw, this is just so sweet, Jodah. I enjoyed it very much, so touching and heartfelt. It makes me think of my dear and beloved grandfather, he loves his rocking chair! :)

Ann Carr from SW England on January 20, 2014:

Isn't it great how smells and other senses evoke lovely memories? Beautiful poem. My granddad was very dear to me too. Ann

Catherine Tally from Los Angeles on January 20, 2014:

Isn't it amazing that any one of our 5 senses can recall our memories? I'm glad that you have this wonderful one of your grandpa to share. Nicely written. Thanks!

cat :)

Sally Gulbrandsen from Norfolk on January 20, 2014:

Jodah- That is cute. I never knew either of my grandfather's but I so appreciate seeing your image of your Grandfather. He looks like a real character.

pochinuk on January 20, 2014:

Jodah,

I feel late in my comment, I have been saturated in some memorabalia myself..interesting how it takes you in.

"..Whenever I smell kerosene..."

You know, that happens when I smell the odor of Moth Balls. My sweet Helen, Dad's mother, tucked them up in her attic. My brothers and sisters and I, after kisses, hugs, and you know that genuine good greeting stuff- headed upward to moth scented heaven.

Thank you for your recollection,

pochinuk

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you For your compliment Nadine.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thanks Eric.

Eric Wayne Flynn from Providence, Rhode Island on January 20, 2014:

Sweet sentiment.

EWF

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you for reading my memories always exploring. I'm glad you enjoy them.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you so much Bill. Much appreciated. That hub of yours inspired me to look to my own life and memories for inspiration.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on January 20, 2014:

This is truly beautiful! I like your memories told in rhyme.....

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on January 20, 2014:

Very lovely work here John! Very lovely indeed.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thanks jan, for the vote up. Glad you enjoyed the read.

Janis Leslie Evans from Washington, DC on January 20, 2014:

Very nice tribute, Jodah, to all who remember a dear grandparent. Good job. Voted up.

Nadine May from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa on January 20, 2014:

You are so good at it. Loved the pictures

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Hey Harishprasad, I'm glad you felt part of the poem. Thanks for reading.

Harish Mamgain from New Delhi , India on January 20, 2014:

So sweet and notalgic ! It felt as if I myself am going through what you described. Your Grandpa looked as if he would start speaking out.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you Jane, I didn't have much time to get to know him but my dad respected and loved him very much so I think he was a good man. I like the few things I can remember. Glad you loved this poem.

Jane Arden on January 20, 2014:

Awe, Grandpa sounded like a proper Grandpa should be. I loved this poem.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on January 20, 2014:

Thank you bro, for being the first to read and your kind comment and vote.

Frank Atanacio from Shelton on January 20, 2014:

sad, but a gentle poem.. voted awesome bro :)