More tomb than room, my grandmother fled
to the fields, convinced the house held death,
a mid-life freak, I guess, though to hear her
tell it, planets must have collided
and debris come raining from the skies.
Grandfather had quit his farming, severed
ten acres for himself and sold the rest.
I had just been born, maybe a reminder
that generations stack one on the last
like hay bales in a paint-faded barn.
On the back lane (or so she told me)
she crumpled to the grass and wept
while the spinning world whipped her thoughts
to the far corners of her known universe.
Tears smeared with dirt. An emerald glow
lit the ground below and drew her back
to this place now: four-leafed clovers,
a carpet of thousands bearing her up.
She took this as a sign, like comet tails
or rainbows, snatched them by the fistful
for their luck, their providence; she lacked
a name for the deliverance they’d bring.
She pressed them in the family Bible, there
to mix with the psalmist’s praises and pleas
for just rewards to the righteous.
I, now grown, a cynic and city-bred,
watch the mottled fingers turn the pages.
Gran is bent on her witness: these aren’t myths,
not unicorns or pots of gold, but real.
She turns the page and reveals the proof
of her hard claim: at the centre of the book,
the foundations of her faith.