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Just Some Last Thoughts This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category.

Thirty-two dusty flowers
three old cassette tapes
a dozen four-leaf clovers
one tragic memoir
and a smattering of faded photographs
stand tribute to you.
I stare fixedly
trying to see
past the earth
I helped to shovel.
I struggle to imagine
those random articles,
the remains
of your cut-off life,
reflecting you.
Yet again
I wonder
how those haphazard items
connect to the person I knew.
The man
who taught me old Yiddish songs
way off-key
who made fries
out of apples
and could spin a story
on the spot.
I wonder
how you
who always found a smile
could have had
such an awful life
for so many years back then.
And what could
those old photos say
about you?
You, who loved the spotlight
but scorned cameras.
I cannot connect the pieces.
I suppose
to me
you will always be two people:
The man who survived
the Holocaust
and struggled to find
the gold-paved roads
promised to him.
And my pop-pop.
I can see your old
worn-felt hat
and taste
your cinnamon toast
on my tongue
even now.
I place a pebble
on your headstone
and hurry away
so you won't see me cry.
Off you go now.
I hope angels
have an ear
for off-key Yiddish.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category. This piece won the March 2011 Teen Ink Poetry Contest.




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This article has 5 comments. Post your own!

JRayeThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 11 at 12:16 pm:
Absolutely, positively beautiful. This is an amazing poem, I don't even have the words... One of my favorite lines is, "I stare fixedly trying to see past the the earth I helped shovel". :) Your grandfather would be be so, SO proud!
 
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MckayThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 10 at 3:28 pm:
I enjoyed reading this piece: it was perfectly written with the right amount of emotion. The last lines were touching. 
 
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caedanse said...
Apr. 1, 2011 at 1:11 am:
Your grandfather should be proud to have a grandchild like you. This is beautifully written. RIP.
 
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EmilyRosebudThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 28, 2011 at 7:19 pm:
Wow! this is beautiful.
 
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queentabbiecat99 said...
Feb. 28, 2011 at 12:54 pm:
aww sad :( and so cool
 
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