For Paul and Dorothea
In the days before grandma died,
she claimed grandpa paid her secret visits,
said he floated through the nursing home’s
He always did love to travel.
That pop-up camper sulked
in the driveway once Parkinson’s set in.
By the time grandma saw him in the window,
He’d already been dead for seven years.
Which is why my family thought
she was hallucinating.
But I believe in floating grandfathers.
Around her bony wrist, I slipped
a coil of rope and whispered,
Next time, catch him.
In her life’s last minutes, I imagine that’s what she did.
That once grandpa was lassoed and tied,
he had enough leverage to take her with him.