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'GRANDMA AND THE
There's been a change in Grandma, we've noticed her of late,
She's always reading history or jotting down some date.
She's tracking back the family, we'll all have pedigrees.
Oh, Grandma's got a hobby, she's climbing Family Trees.
Poor Grandad does the cooking and now, or so he states,
That worst of all, he has to wash the cups and dinner plates.
Grandma can't be bothered, she's busy as a bee
Compiling genealogy - for the Family Tree.
She has no time to baby-sit, the curtains are a fright,
No buttons left on Grandad's shirt, the flower bed's a sight.
She's given up her club work, the serials on TV,
The only thing she does nowadays is climb the Family Tree.
She goes down to the courthouse and studies ancient lore,
We know more about our forebears than we ever knew before.
The books are old and dusty, they make poor Grandma sneeze,
A minor irritation when you're climbing Family Trees.
The mail is all for Grandma, it comes from near and far,
Last week she got the proof she needs to join the DAR.
A worthwile avocation, to that we all agree,
A monumental project, to climb the Family Tree.
Now some folks came from Scotland and some from Galway Bay,
Some were French as pastry, some German, all the way.
Some went on west to stake their claim, some stayed near by the sea,
Grandma hopes to find them all as she climbs the Family Tree.
She wanders through the graveyard in search of date or name,
The rich, the poor, the in-between, all sleeping there the same.
She pauses now and then to rest, fanned by a gentle breeze
That blows above the Fathers of all our Family Trees.
There were pioneers and patriots mixed in our kith and kin
Who blazed the paths of wilderness and fought through thick and thin.
But none more staunch than Grandma, whose eyes light up with glee
Each time she finds a missing branch for the Family Tree.
Their skills were wide and varied, from carpenter to cook
And one (Alas!) the record shows was hopelessly a crook.
Blacksmith, weaver, farmer, judge, some tutored for a fee,
Long lost in time, now all recorded on the Family Tree.
To some it's just a hobby, to Grandma it's much more,
She knows the joys and heartaches of those who went before.
They loved, they lost, they laughed, they wept, and now for you and me
They live again in spirit, around the Family Tree.
At last she's nearly finished and we are each exposed.
Life will be the same again, this we all supposed!
Grandma will cook and sew, serve cookies with our tea.
We'll all be fat, just as before that wretched Family Tree.
Sad to relate, the Preacher called and visited for a spell,
We talked about the Gospel, and other things as well,
The heathen folk, the poor and then - 'twas fate, it had to be,
Somehow the conversation turned to Grandma and the Family Tree.
We tried to change the subject, we talked of everything
But then in Grandma's voice we heard that old familiar ring.
She told him all about the past and soon was plain to see
The preacher, too, was nearly snared by Grandma and the Family Tree.
He never knew his Grandpa, his mother's name was ... Clark?
He and Grandma talked and talked, outside it grew quite dark.
We'd hoped our fears were groundless, but just like some disease,
Grandma's become an addict - she's hooked on Family Trees!
Our souls were filled with sorrow, our hearts sank with dismay,
Our ears could scarce believe the words we heard our Grandma say,
"It sure is a lucky thing that you have come to me,
I know exactly how it's done, I'll climb your Family Tree!"
Acknowledgements: Poem by Virginia Day McDonald
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