Tag Archive: grandma





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I shall

For I have no choice

Always watched, swathed in Grandma’s

Warm worn hands wrapped on my youthful face

Cold wrinkly fingers in my hand over the cotton of her last bed.

The guardian angel over my shoulder taking me to paths unknown,

paths never asked for because I never thought I was worthy of them,

I know you did put him in my way, for that I smile

Even happy I would still like you back

He’s the perfect mirror, same yet totally different.

Swimmingly good is the boat ride, very surprising.

Summer day is one smile, coldest of winter the nights spent embraced.

Very strange but needed is being apart, like having freedom to breathe in and expel.

Clarity of mind, thoughtfulness, worry, affection.

Things much truer now than before.

This in my life is something that sings a tune always emulated maybe, but never truly wanted.

A change of heart, a gust of wind, snowflake, icy air.

I shall love you, for you have given me no choice.

Humming away while someone among the stars smiles softly.


And then…who are you to disturb the waters?

Shadows in the summer while you bathe in the sun.

So much has changed in a year, I can barely wrap my head around it.

A late afternoon, a medium climb at steady speed.

Sadness underlying my breath.

Hot asphalt, blue July sky.

Thirst for water and there you were.

I didn’t want to talk so I didn’t stop…I have to give you  praise you just wanted to (smile)

And from there to now.

What the hell, I don’t trust your knowing instincts so far in time…

Still time is a strange thing.

Time took me here with you, without her and without him.

A place I don’t know in the sun.

It burns, fiend.

I’m still waiting for the end while the road goes ever on under the sun.


I’m so fed up with all of this.

Stay safe obsessively screamed from the rooftops, stop at the doorstep.

The evident fear of anyone you encounter in a supermarket aisle thinking ‘Does she/he have IT?!’ as they jump out of the way like a scaredy cat.

The silence in the mornings, only the chirping of birds.

Me loosing money, Chevrolet Darling snoring in the garage.

My mountain bike covered by a layer of dust.

Forced to stillness when I really needed to move, work, let all of it behind.

I’m no more capable to work out my grief without being up and about.

My quarantine started way before the official one.

In the second half of February my back went rigid for a week, I couldn’t even sit without feeling pain and it forced me to take a lot of Diclofenac that made me sleepy and incoherent.

After that my parents passed me the flu and oh boy wasn’t that sweet.

10 days of rest in bed while Covid started to spread in Lombardy right where my only 1-year old nephew is.

I didn’t have fever or cough but a nail cracked open my head worse than migraine.

A week after North Italy was basically quarantined and all normal life went to hell in a hand-basket.

The first week I really thought I was going mad.

The second week I wasn’t talking with anyone and reorganizing the space I found myself to live in maniacally.

Into the third week I constantly tried to not think while cleaning the numerous hard drives I stuffed full without having time to organize.

The fourth week looks like a bad dream, watching 1940s b/w films and documentaries way into the wee hours of the morning.

The fifth week is here and I’m starting to lose grip on time, this is worse than torture or inflicted pain. There is nothingness in every direction, even in my mind.


Let me be clear here.

The enemies here are psychosis, fear and hunger.

I already lost my Gran just before all this started.

I’m positive I’m going to hear about many others reaching the meadow at the end of the road.

We’re losing not only history but the very rocks, the foundations our lives were based on.

We will never be the same people, countries, cities again.

Still we are gonna rise.

I want to believe it.

I need to believe this despite my mourning is still in full blaze.

Grandma Flora would never forgive me if I start doubting.

In the meantime you play capitalism in its highest form…with nothing else to do.

Sono stata via.

Magari non ve ne siete nemmeno accorti.

Ho passato gli ultimi tempi male, malissimo.

Non tanto per Ti e le sue grandi ‘idee’ dell’ultimo momento, è da un bel po’ che ho aperto la messaggistica o avuto notizie di lui comunque.

Qualcosa di pre-annunciato mi è arrivato come un camion addosso.

In più ho dovuto fare la parte della forte mentre gli altri se la sguazzavano nel dolore o perlomeno potevano confrontarsi con l’accaduto e farsene una ragione.

Quando ho avuto tempo e modo di fare lo stesso, non ci sono riuscita e ci sono stata ancora peggio.

Sapevo che sarebbe successo, sapevo che dopo un certo momento tutto ci era regalato ed il tempo a nostra disposizione sarebbe scaduto ma la certezza assoluta del ‘dopo’ è devastante.

Non riesco ancora a scordarmi quel cielo blu, i venti gradi stabili sotto un sole da primavera avanzata di inizio Febbraio, io che cercavo di non tirare troppo in bici perché era presto e c’era tempo.

Il pensiero che saliva su mentre infilavo il rampichino e salutavo due vicini poi iniziavo l’ultima salita dura.

Ero fuori allenamento, ho dovuto fermarmi a metà.

Sono arrivata alle 14.05, lo so perché è suonato il campanile.

Mi sono seduta sui gradini per un po’, era ancora troppo presto intanto.

Quindi i primi dettagli atipici, i rumori, la porta lasciata aperta.

Sono entrata per  capire.

La fine.


Almeno non ha sofferto troppo continuavo a ripetermi Almeno adesso può stare in pace e non preoccuparsi più delle mille cose di cui mi parlava quando ero lì seduta da sola con lei a prendere il caffè.

E mentre pensavo questo, tornavo a casa in MTB, non vedevo nemmeno la strada un po’ per le lacrime che sfocavano tutto un po’ perché pedalavo come un’indemoniata, tanto non c’era più tempo.

Ora, a distanza di mesi, il vuoto è rimasto.

L’unica consolazione è il fatto che la sento.

Se ne andata in un posto in cui non posso ancora raggiungerla ma la sua voce è dentro la mia testa, parla nel suo dialetto particolare a metà fra veneto e piemontese, mi racconta cose che non sapevo ancora.

I suoi occhi blu vedono attraverso i miei.

Non mi importa cosa pensano gli altri.

Lei è ancora qui con me.


Mind, something you lost along the way.

Lights going out never coming back.

Windows shuttered, you watching scared from the cracks as the sun can’t get inside anymore.

How does it feel?

Looking at an unknown world through a lace curtain?

How does it feel to continuously search for unknown words you can’t say? To question the identity of someone you gave life to?

To sleep through a whole day, to forget how to eat, the gift of words and emotions on your face?

I can see it from the outside Grandma.

You don’t know even your name right now.

Sometimes you talk but you don’t understand what you’re saying.

You ask but the answers mean nothing to you.

What are your thoughts about?

Do you still think?

Can you?

Who are you?

Sunday afternoon, drinking tea with Grandma Flora (my namesake!)…

A cup older than me, all baroque, made of chalk.

Sky not bluer than our eyes.

Family with three generations of blue eyes.

Home not really home anymore, still and warm.

Afternoon in amber and silence.

Peace and sighs.

Strings of dialogue unimaginable, loving her more than myself.


There was a ring I never took off when I was no more than a teen girl.
It wasn’t valuable, found it dirty and dusty at the end of a drawer in a long before abandoned house.
It missed a little tiny diamond on its cast and it was so tiny in size I could only wear it on my left ring finger.
The center stone was a smoothed out ruby with a square shape.
But the beauty in it was not the stones.
It was in the fine work on the silver.
The thin veneers running along the sides in fragile, intricate leaves that could only be made by hand and with skill.
I never seen since a work like that ever.
It fitted my finger to the point I thought it was made for me and me alone.
It was probably just a cheap trinket bought at a fair or something like that in the time when my grandmother was just a young girl.
She’s 96 now, I’m 30 and the ring is still with me.
Worthless and consumed, but the silver still shines and fits somewhat.
The leaves are still there and they mean a world never gone to me.
Afternoons and evenings, card games and teas, red roses and blue hydrangeas.

You have forgotten, Gran.
I did not.
You can’t remember.
I shall do it for you for all the time I’m still given on this Earth.


[coloured photo by Mike Savad]

I’m so tired I could sleepwalk.
And falling asleep with music blasting on from headphones while I’m trying to finish some accounting is never a good thing.
Gran is still here but now seems so much more herself I almost think this is a dream…
And I’m so tired I feel like I’ll never start writing again.
Goodnight then to those who still can have good dreams.


Grandma is in the hospital, I do think these are her last.
I just spent a whole afternoon sitting beside her bed worrying inside like a mother hen.
And she…she doesn’t remember a thing, you could say to her that it’s winter and she would trust everyone openly.
She smiled at me all the time and I don’t really know how I smiled back.
“Oh but I can see, dear. How she looks at you, the light in her eyes, she adores you!”
And that’s why I’m so afraid…when the time will come something will crack with absurd force.
I’m just so tired I could sleep through summer, miss the faces of all the flowers I ever seen her nurture with care.

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