Friday 10 October 2014


The Grandmother I never met was red-haired
and fiery. They say she was feminine and sexy,
yet could swear like a trooper when sufficiently roused.
It is rumoured she was a Witch
because her outhouses were filled with bunches
of drying medicinal herbs, and she often conversed
with the 'dead' (I suppose that's where I get it from!).
Her house was set into a Surrey hillside,
with a wilderness of a garden that must have been paradise
to the wildlife she called her familiars.
I believe she played up the 'Witch' thing
to discourage trespassers - she was, after all,
an increasingly private person in her twilight years.
She played whist with her brothers - and always beat them,
and drank stout from the bottle, and ran
a laundry for the idle rich who considered
such everyday chores beneath them.
During the Great War she held weekly seances
for those who had lost someone - her vocation,
she claimed, was to bring comfort wherever she could.
She knitted socks and blankets for the Tommies
at the Front, and cursed the "Mass-murdering World Leaders."
Tripe and onions (yuk) and jam roly-poly
were her favourite foods, and she always smelled
of vanilla and lavender water.
She was strict with her four children -
over strict compared to today's standards - she never
spared Grandfather's belt for the slightest misdemeanour.
Well, with a husband in France and the ever-present
possibility that he may never return,
I suppose she considered it her responsibility
to instill self-discipline and respect into her brood
in order to prevent them from roaming the streets like savages
as so many others did.
But still they idolised her - especially the youngest,
my Father.
I know I would have too.
Oh if only she hadn't passed away before I was born.
She was such a brave and spirited woman,
one I could have learnt so much from.
And I am incredibly proud in the knowledge
that her genes live on in me...


  1. Dear Ygraine she sounds like a marvel, amazing how many of her traits you've inherited, bet she's up above, saying out loud, "That's my Girl!!!"
    although she can't understand why you don't like her Tripes and onions, yuk.....
    Great tale of a relative passed on...some of her traits, bravo on this writing it is as always, mesmerizing and beautiful....

    1. Oh how kind of you to say that, Sweetie...thank you so much!
      Oh yes...tripe and onions...invokes nausea just imagining it! :/ lol

      Love and Hugs xxx

  2. I don't know if i told you of my new site:

    1. Yes, I found it, thanks.
      Thought I'd left some comments...but perhaps they've disappeared again...oh I hope not!
      I will come and

  3. What nice and sweet poem Ygraine!!
    She sounds amazing!! xoxo

    1. Oh how kind!
      Thank you, much.:)

      Big hugs xxx

  4. Your grandmother is still very near you, Ygraine. She must be for you to write this beautiful and magical ode to her. I picture her smiling at you calling her a witch...a sly smile of recognition. For I believe that those of us that feel and know of things never learned were born of it.

    I very much love this and I just feel that your grandmother has been aware of you from the very day that you were conceived. How could she not know...for you are a part of her~

    Hugs and Blessings

    1. What a wonderful, comforting thought...I do so hope she is still here by my side.
      As she was 45 when my father was born and then he was 48 when I was born, sadly, I missed her. But I have often wondered...
      Thank you so much, Jan...your words really have brought me such comfort.:)

      Love and Hugs xxx

  5. A very colorful character. You place her so well as a resourceful and strong woman in the times she was dealing with.. Wonderful tribute. Wonderful poem.

    1. Yes, I think she must have been. It never ceases to amaze me how people manage to find such a wealth of inner strength in times of hardship and austerity. I'm not sure I'd cope as well as she did...I'm just not that strong emotionally...or perhaps that is simply because I've never found myself in such a challenging situation...we can all surprise ourselves sometimes, can't we?!
      Many thanks, Anthony. I really appreciate that.:)

  6. i feel you a the time i was ten i lost 3 of my grandparents...of two of them i have such vague recollections...almost like little shadows of memory...i remember odd things like their smell..the feel of their hands...a room we were in together...

    1. explain it so eloquently, Brian...
      Because I was born so late in my parents' lives, I had only my maternal grandmother, and she passed away when I was I only vaguely remember those things you've mentioned.
      I would have loved to have known one of my grandfathers...
      Still, I guess everything is for a reason!
      Many thanks for sharing your own's good to know someone else understands...:)

  7. What a lovely lady she was, I think that you are a lot like her Ygraine, Such a
    lovely poem about your late grandmother :)

    1. Oh what a wonderful compliment...thank you so much, Rose...:)

      Hope you are having a fabulous Monday xxx

  8. What a great character. Now I know where you get your strength from! :-)

    Geetings from London.

    1. Ha...sometimes that family strength seems somewhat elusive in me...and then I'm aware of her giving me a well-aimed kick up the backside! *chuckles*
      Many thanks, CiL :)

      Greetings from a rather flooded Hampshire!!

  9. I would have loved to be able to sit down in having the privilege to chat with such a lovely woman as that.

    1. Me too, it is, I only have family stories of her.
      Many thanks.:)

      Have a great Monday

  10. What a beautiful ode to your very touching and moving.

    1. Thank you so much, Keith...I really appreciate that.:)

  11. I would have loved to talk to her and share a day with her ;o) What a special lady! She is surely in your soul! Love this Ygraine ;o)
    Big Hugs ;o)

    1. Oh I so wish you could have...wish I could have!
      That she lives on in my Soul is incredibly comforting.
      Thank you so much, Sweetie...I really appreciate it.:)

      Big Hugs back xxx

  12. Magnificent tribute to her..she sounds like my kind of kindred-spirit...I love how you described her in energy and essence and soulfulness and in real life...powerful. I connect to her privateness and also playing up things to scare off others ..that made me giggle! What a blessing and gift she is...she sounds like a remarkable woman! Thanks for bringing her to life through your words! She is awake in your heart and wildly running free through your Soul I am certain!


Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on my posts.
I really appreciate hearing your opinions...:)