Creases

He's smiling in the photo
soft creases at the corners
of his eyes

I like to think I
was given his smile.

This morning 
I wondered what
words i would use
to describe him.

How his voice, airy with age,
greeted me, 
through that smile
and the creases at the corners.

He'd say,

"we love you." 

I am grateful,
he tried
to offer my language
of love.

What words
will tell 
of the generosity
of a man
who grew up 
before he was 
allowed to be a child?

How will I share,
fully,
the ways he 
loved and worried
in equal parts?

He is not verbose
ever curious, he 
holds space for others
in conversation.

He lacks patience,
is quick to anger.

But mostly 

quick to loyalty
to his family.

He is both mountain
and sea

Strong and peaceful
Stubborn and learning

Even when my Nanna
forgets who he is
and shouts insults,
he attempts understanding.

"Iola,"

He'll comfort,

"what is it?"

She shakes her head
and falls bedind the wall
built from dimentia.

He looks at me,
creases at the corner 
of his eyes,

"she was such a strong woman.
She took care of all of us."

Loyal 
I think I'll say.

My grandfather 
was loyal,
and steadfast
in his love. 

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