The Introduction

The first time

my grandmother

laid eyes on me

that Spartan afternoon bathed in July

I stood sweaty

rumpled wilted

in the middle of

her dusty courtyard.

After my seven-thousand-

mile journey

all I managed to notice was her muddy gray veneer.

When I looked

again, I found her

eyes seeping into mine -

was she trying to

take in all of my

sixteen years with

one glance? Was she trying

to make a connection

with what was hers?

Like a Mediterranean sunrise

her beautiful shy

smile opened her face

and out poured

crackling oranges,

searing blues, a

dauntless red with

touches of yellow


around the edges.

Like sea surges on

shore and quenches

parched earth,

my grandmother and I met.

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