for Anthony Wills


It is the eyes—slightly protruding, dark.
He stares at me.  Holding the crumbling
photo I ask, Who is this

Your grandfather, my mother replies.
Then who is the grandfather I call Grandfather? 
The man in the picture follows this question
without taking his eyes off of me. 
My father died when I was seven years
old, and
Nana married again,
the grandfather you know,

my step-father.  He adopted me.

My mother looks like a little girl hiding behind
this man in the picture she’d covered up
for so many years.  I look exactly like him. 

She is silent.  He is silent.
I stare right back at him—
the man with my eyes. 
My blood thickens.

Published, Over a Threshold of Roots, Sandra Larson, Pudding House Chapbook Series, 2007