I WAS NEARLY five-years-old when my daddy died. He was young and handsome, and
drowned in an accident on a lake that is now far away from me.
GrannaLucie was his mother.
All our friends and family called her “Groovy Grannie,” for her free spirit, natural beauty, and completely loving nature–when her oldest son left his first wife (also a loving, beautiful woman who gave her three awesome children) and married a horrible woman from Florida and had three more beautiful children, she wouldn’t allow us to speak ill of her: “She’s the mother of my grandchildren,” she often said. “It’s not their fault.”
GrannaLucie was our source of forgiveness, creativity and unconditional love. And our source of our first taste of beer. What happened at her house, stayed at her house.
Daddy was her second and last son. I don’t know if he shared her sense of the future, but the spring he died, he planted daffodils in front of the wide living room window. I helped him, and wondered aloud, “If these are a surprise for Granny, why don’t we don’t we plant them in front of the kitchen window?”
He laughed and said, “Because she doesn’t cook.”
He died in May, on her birthday.
The next spring, the daffodils broke through the snow.
When she saw them, she broke into something close to a cry. She took me to the store, where we bought a six-pack of beer, and we went to his grave. She spread out a blanket at the foot of his headstone, and we sat and talked to him.
She told him how proud he’d be of his girls, and the son he never got to meet.
I miss both of them every day. And every time I see this simple, lovely yellow flower, I think of them. And the unbreakable bond of family . . .
I love you GrannaLucie. I think of you always, and dream of you and your daffodils often.