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Long poem by George Zamalea | Details |

WHILE REMEMBERING

Brazil

As I drove through the heavy snow of Manquiville,
Deep in silence back to Grandfather's house, all frightened faces
Full of solemnly dreams, I remember the smell of the sea.
	The unseen Grandpa's hands, pulling and pulling
	The full net of fishes.

I remember my Grandpa at this moment haltered
His muscles so tight that I was able to see the thin 
Veins become heavier, healthier, richer,
While his sternly eyes ahead like two brighter poisonous souls,
	Waiting and waiting and waiting, whatever the reason
	He had in mind.

I remember just to follow him where the wide sea even powerful
As he was growing now calmed through the tide waves falling
	Behind his horizon. I love see him like this,
	Where the dreadly underworld as unique as mercy
	Could not control him.

	I'm driving slowly now, and I can see the road,
	The sea behind, the trees old and shadowless,
	The town of Manquiville quieted, deathless, soundless,
	All gone and dumb, behind the weaken sun.

I remember I looked down satisfied in the way it is going,
	Who guarded the visitor’s hope, who greeted
	The intruder who more than 25 years was gone!

	What a delightful remembrance to see the dangerous
Floor through my mind beginning to murmur thousand
	Of happy slaves soon or later be caught!
	How close we are listening by the jealous Visitor,
	Always in circle, still far away from the smell
		Of the fisherman!

But there was no one. All empty and in white,
	Cobwebs everywhere, the insects had come and gone,
	Birds' nests are there, a snake emerged and hissing away,
	All seem that they don't care who I am and why
	I came back. It has been so long since the Fisherman is dead!

I remember the sea...that day, I think,
	Oh, how wonderful is the sea lyre that you are dreaming 
	To hold underneath the stormy afternoon.
	I remember the sea...the sea! Seeing the sky-blue crown
Give to my Grandpa and Me, almost tremble, the unknown pray
	Of God, which carrying golden fishes, your treasure wall,
	Deep, enormous, cold and deathly, we are still afraid of you!

	I stop my fancy car, all around is the designed 
	Of muddy roses, birds and horses, wild squirrels,
	Like a feast of yellow swamp, and I stand there,
	Dressed by tie and fancy suit, a lawyer,
	A sucked soul, coming to see his Grandfather deepened
	In the muddy ground, filled with nasty fishes.

I remember so suddenly, the nets of that day
	Became tensed, like our hearts and our eyes,
	Which it was unable to handle by myself.
	There! There! I cried all along inside the small boat
And here and there is when my Old Man becomes only one
	Where body, soul, mind, wisdom, and energy --
	Become one forcer to kill
	And as he was pulling and pulling. His old arms,
	Still strong like two brawny-whited iron pistons,
	Pulling and pulling, and the fishes as ghastly eye,
Jumping and jumping, coolly frightened, exposing themselves Completely under the half-light of the moonlight!

	Now I cannot move. Why I am here? Why did I come?
	With love, with pain, with doubt,
	All I cannot say, behind the muse I have,
	How I can explain myself the beauties of my Grandpa?


But I remember that day. Oh, what a shining light!
	What moonlight! 
	I was there, with the oak wood, deathless,
	Like tiny hands, but the spirit of some old Song,
	Helping my Grandpa.
	I remember I was wondering if those fishes have any souls.
	To live, listening the other side of my head,
	Where my Grandpa told you're not born being a Fisherman
	But as a blending poet as myself.

I remember I caught his mouth full of smile, with a promise
	To die anywhere except here in the sea.
I bend my knees, with his nostrils stealing
Of his arms, pulling and pulling like a long sound
Of violin which I never knew why he had told that.

	And I remember, you could not play with the sea
Or the hungry fishes, now handsome and wilder,
To survive like me, to become a stranger
	In the middle of the sea.

	Now here, I am growing smaller
My smile fading, no reason to be here, who before the infant
Archer who crying freedom, ready to a man,
	I bring shame to the place of Fisherman;
	I smiled sadly, looked ahead, with wishes to kiss
	The Old Man's face drawing by the ocean air
	And let that old hands of fisherman carried my hair
To my blending soul,
	And tell him I made a city boy under the sunlight,
	But never as a dream piercing through the dimly sea.
 


Long poem by Timothy Jacks | Details |

My Grandfathers Dying Wish

See problems they no worry Timothy
He was raised by his Great Grandmother
One day she taught him
Miho you can make life beautiful or ugly
Work hard, find a woman who has a strong back
Beauty fades it doesn’t last long
Now let me tell you 
A woman with a strong back may not be your perfect companion
Times are changing, I think Faith is more important these days
I say okay Grandma, can I have the horachata now that you made me
No hush up! You can have it when I’m finished talking
Timothy come your poor Grandfather wanted you to have this
It is his Journal and I have never read out of it
She hands it to me
I am struck by it’s cover, it is brown and plain
Yet it spoke to me by it’s elegant style
These words were printed on the cover “Blanco Vendetta”
I was drawn and pulled in untill I was covered by the spell
The first page I open too it says “My first Mil Besos”
The Temptess that blew my heart away
I turn to page 33
It says “The story of an Apache Warrior”
There are no rules to an Apache Warrior when it comes to fighting
He says if you are my enemy I don’t care how but I’m gonna kill you
Page 41 is like a fist full of words thrown across the page
Barrio boxing, The protection of the Shield of Faith
Brokenhearted for my careless speech has left her heartbroken
Strengthened by Love “Amor”
Nourished by the sunshine in her hand
There is healing in its beams
Blessed by her presence Del Dios I am Greatful
I’m like Grandpa what did you say wrong
Then these words come to me
Give her your full attention when she speaks to you
Because the Heart of the Wise studies how to answer
So I close it and my finger brushes a bookmark
It’s the Last page
It says To: “Timothy my son who is as mighty as an army”
I Thank you for the Greatest Gift
For the Greatest Gifts are as small as your small hand that touched me
I plant these seeds and they will take root and grow because you are good ground
Timothy let me say That without you I would of never found my Faith in GOD
Listen for it is your Grandfather who is dead and speechless
Timothy you see the good in everything
And I know you will understand my words clearly
If a man gives you his word
Promise me not to plan your future on it
And if you give your word my son
Do everything in your Power to fulfill it
AND NEVER Promise more than you can deliver 
For it is better to put out more than you promised
Everyman is considered unwise when he appears foolish
I wish I could give you some insight about women
But your Great Grandmother may help you better than I can
But never timothy, Never be quick to fall in Love 
Or give your heart to a woman
Listen carefully to her words when she speaks to you
Cherish Her give her your full undue attention 
Because the Heart of the Wise studies how to answer
Love your neighbors as yourself
And do not strive against another man
If he has done nothing wrong to offend you
AS much as it is possible live peacefully with all men
And it is okay for you to speak these things with your Great Grandmother
She is a very wise and God-fearing woman
Amor take the greatest care of her, I Love you Son
Timothy when the time comes to avenge my death
Hit harder then you ever have before
But not in a Duel son, not like an open Vendetta
Marry his daughter Maria
The one who is pretty and Two years younger than you
Oh! He will suffer greatly!
And it will kill him to know that I chose this way to repay him
And remember son to be ready to fight any man at the drop of a hat


Long poem by Terry Trainor | Details |

A Trip to Heaven

Sitting working in my private room a grandfather clock ticks and tocks so very loudly,
Like a metronome tuned into my mind my eyes become heavy my lids slowly begin to close,
My mind drifts into very dark places, jet black places with a tiny white dot way off,
I walk towards the dot and after miles and miles it started to grow so much brighter.

Looking behind to see where I started there was nothing just the darkest of dark black,
I have no choice but to keep on walking towards the white dot now confused and scared,
After hours and hours I reach the dot but it is not a dot now it is a new bright world,
There were green fields greener than I have ever seen the trees had heavy velvet leaves.

People walked towards me they were smiling they were happy I wanted to shake their hands,
But they hugged me and held me and talked so kindly my troubles and worries disappeared,
Young children skipping, my new friends laughing it seemed I had known them all my life,
Being with these people was pure happiness we walked up to a white mansion we went inside.

A beautiful girl came running out to meet us she stood in front of me and gave me a rose,
It was the reddest rose I have ever seen it was frosted and gilded and drops of dew fell,
A man with grey hair and a white suit sat by a piano and began to play the sweetest tune,
I leaned on it's shiny surface and could feel the beat of soft hammers on wire, pure music.

All smiled and clapped when this maestro had finished my friends giggled as they saw my joy,
They asked lovely questions nice questions I enjoyed answering as they made me feel good,
We got up and began to walk back to the place where I had first met my wonderful friends,
We talked we laughed everything was about nice things I could feel the smile on my face.

Then the man with grey hair and the white suit said it was time that I made my way home,
Still smiling I desperately wanted to stay forever he saw this and said to have patience,
They stood in line by the entrance each person hugged and kissed me tears ran down my face,
The next thing I knew I was in my private room the grandfather clock still going tick tock.

I thought about my wonderful dream those wonderful people and still felt very warm inside,
It was all so very real and was very disappointed knowing it was just a lovely sweet dream,
Those people in that beautiful garden blessed with such loveliness they seemed so very real,
Standing up and stretching I saw something by the door it was a beautiful rose frosted and dewy,
It was the reddest rose I have ever seen.


Long poem by Jasmine Cruz | Details |

I Miss You Grandpa

                                   ( I MISS YOU GRANDPA )

                                        I sat on your lap
                                      Looked in your eyes
                                       The sense of hurt
                                       Was yet a surprise
                                       You were so happy
                                         I was so young
                                       I didn`t understand
                                That your life was now done


                                         I sat on your lap 
                                       Looked in your eyes
                                     The feeling of strength 
                                       Was yet a surprise
                                       You were so weak
                                          Yet so strong
                                     It was hard to believe
                                   That soon you`d be gone


                                         I sat on your lap
                                        Looked in you eyes
                                         The sense of love
                                         Was not a surprise
                                         You are now gone
                                         Yet your still here
                                        You always told me 
                                 That you will always be near


                                       I sat by your grave
                                      Looked at the stone
                                       Why you are gone
                                       Is still left unknown

                                      I used to blame god
                                    For taking you from me
                               I was too young to understand
                                       And to hurt to see

                                          I realize now
                                 That god is not to blame
                                    For taking you away
                                  And causing such pain!

                                     I miss you grandpa
                                    Each and every day
                                  And Ill always love you
                                  More than these words
                                      Could ever say.


Long poem by Paul Callus | Details | . You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/santas_special_delivery_a_collab_624913' st_title='Santa's Special Delivery: a collab'>

Santa's Special Delivery: a collab

Brutal was the biting wind,
sweeping brown locks of a tiny urchin 
side to side, often hiding her eyes.
 
Oversized slippers she had donned
were lost in deep snow drifts.
She plodded forth barefoot, risking frostbite.
 
Little daylight remained to guide her;
a dangerous holiday trek she undertook.
Villagers in passing carriages didn't notice her.
 
With snow falling fast and accumulations growing deep,
she didn't realize she'd left the main road.
If only she could find her grandfather's cottage!
 
For Christmas Eve it was,
but in her heart there was no joy.
Her cruel stepmother’s house she left in search of love.
 
As darkness fell, the biting cold increased.
Her weary legs she dragged; with teary eyes she searched
in vain, for only shadows could she see.
 
A green-clad elf with lantern lit was homeward bound
deep in the woods, when all at once he spied this forlorn girl,
sprawled on the snow deprived of strength and shivering.
 
He shone the light on her white face; eyelids moved and flickered.
He read her thoughts and understood; he knew just how to help her. 
No time was lost; his crystal flute he blew to call his trusted friends. 
 
An entire family of elves pulled the shivering child,
placing her gently on a sled,
fully decked out in Christmas flare.
 
The elves had been on their way to Santa;
Yuletide deliveries had to be made, 
but the wee girl's plight took priority.
 
Once she was aboard the sled,  
reindeer arrived on cue,
ushering the crew to the North Pole.
 
The little girl came to quickly,
nestled in Santa's arms.  
With pleasure he brought her to her grandfather's cottage.
 
Grandfather sat alone by his roaring fire
when a knock came to the door.
He went to see who it could be so late into the night.
 
There on the doorstep his young granddaughter stood with shining eyes,
a dream come true for those who never give up hope.
He picked her up in welcome arms, a warm embrace of love.
 
The clock struck twelve. They heard the sound of jingling bells
as Santa waved goodbye and off he sped across the sky.
Christmas had arrived, and his first gift had been delivered! 

 
[Inspired by the first paragraph of The Little Match Girl by H.C. Andersen]

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Co-written by: Paul Callus~Carolyn Devonshire~Valentina Stagno-Navarra
Contest: A Christmas Tale
Sponsor: Debbie Guzzi
Placed: 1st


Long poem by ashley ho | Details |

lighted fingers

our father, who art in heaven
hallowed be thy name thy kingdom come
a muttering chorus amidst the silence
as a firefly lands on my fingers

sending tribute to either god
or the soul that the unbelieving congregation mourns for
a constant mummer of your name in untouched hearts
a procession of empty prayers for the ashes

scattered in an urn of porcelain encased in
a shroud of guilt and confusion and shock
on this 3rd day of the 4th month
may the world weep for the
man they never knew.

the fireflies are burning in the air (are you there?)
breathing graves three feet under where my feet stand
where his no longer are
and no longer will
but oh— will you please come back?

come, may the light of these fireflies linger upon the
tears that fall from the empty. may
thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven
may hopeless hope lift the ungrounded spirits of this
congregation of faithful cynics with steeled hearts and bolted minds.
and in this time and space of desperation—

give us this day our daily bread
it is only in these moments
that the entire world believes just for a moment that maybe
just maybe god will be there

and in that moment— that god must be there

the last slivers of thread as the fingers let go
forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us
but in our hearts a symphony of loathe and
hatred for everyone and everything
where blame is a burning firefly that refuses rest.

the light on my fingers is a faint flicker

lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil
that reigns in our blood but flows into grief
a multitude of concentrated desolation where
the firefly graves are in the hands of our people

for thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory
and the stills moving in an endless wave as we walk away
an overwhelming voice of many voices
whispering the lords prayer

as we all did,
as we all one day do

now and forever—
(amen)

– – –

i watch you fade away into the darkness
shining eyes; lighted fingers
waving goodbye, ill be okay
retreating into the mist of the morning,

leaving me as wordless
as the god i once believed in

– – –

since youve gone away
ive started loving the world so much
all i ever want is to leave it

– – –

and so i whisper my final prayer, oh god–
if youre up there,
take me?


Long poem by James Tate | Details |

Grandfathers Clock Revisited

The wrinkled gent woke up suddenly in the middle of the night. Staring into the 
darkness he saw nothing. Gloom and fear ganged up against his mind. Had he 
heard something? What was it? Something falling with a bang? What? 
He had heard things fall in the night such as glass picture frames—old strings giving 
way. The picture would crash to the floor, shattering the glass. He would recognize 
this. But he did not hear shattering glass. 
Was it a thief in the night? He lay listening, not daring to move. The night was dark, 
cloudy, gloomy—and scary! Desperately replaying the sound, he heard a bong in his 
mind’s ear.
A bong! That would have come from the old grandfather’s clock. Yes, it had to be his 
grandfather’s clock. He knew it. His stomach released its tension.
His eyes popped open again. How could it be the clock? The clock stopped running 
when his grandfather died – forty years ago, this very night!
Suddenly the clock started striking. Twelve strokes at midnight. With bolt-upright 
attention, he sat in self-detention, and pondered.
His grandfather was a strong man who lived to be ninety years old. Then the clock 
stopped to run no more. One of his kin wrote a song about it, and it was sung for 
generations.
	“My grandfather’s clock was too large for the shelf, so it stood ninety 
years on the floor. 	It was taller by half than the old man himself, though it weighed 
not a penny weight more . . .”
He would find out why the clock was striking. Slipped quietly to the room near the 
clock’s encasement, he saw the clock standing with its door open.
His eyes adjusted a little, and there in the floor he saw a dark object. What was it? 
He had left nothing there on which to stumble in the night. You learn a few things, 
he thought, in a long life like his. And you keep things picked up so you won’t fall 
over them.
Moving with stealth, he saw something hunched and furry, standing vigil with eyes 
reflecting light. His cat! Apparently, the cat had chased a mouse up the clock 
seeking safety. Its weight tripped the spring wound tightly, causing it to strike.
In his delusion the old gentleman grabbed his shotgun from the mantle. With the 
menace looming bigger, he quickly pulled the trigger. Now the old grandfather’s 
clock is no more. And the cat and mouse are a taxidermy chore.

####
Written for John Heck's "Choose your forte!" contest


Long poem by GIRISHA SUNEJA | Details |

knowing you knowing me

We've known each other for  a while now 
I think its fair to say 
I haven't met anyone like you 
not ever, not to this day
  
when our eyes really first met 
something inside me began to stir 
I was unsure what to make of it 
so I shrugged it off without a care 
 
weeks have passed by, our conversations keep flowing 
like raindrops from above, the topics have no warning.  
The more that we explore,  the greater my yearn 
to travel the footprints of thought 
that leave tracks across your mind. 
  
time flies fast, its almost a blur 
we've know each other over a year now 
and you have become a mama.  
I've never seen you so happy 
a miracle from above, I am sure.. 
I love how your eyes are smiling 
This is a picture I adore.

it was at this point, when I looked into your eyes 
that what bothered me before came back to life  
the stirring within came out of the blue 
it was then I realised it was fuelled by you. 
still unsure what it was within 
I just looked up and gave you a grin 
  
Its 2 in the morning,  I should be asleep 
each time I close my eyes, its you I see. 
For a second there is blackness,  and everything is sound 
then from nowhere,  your face is found  
  
My arms reach out, to hold you tight 
to hold you close throughout the night 
but like before,  you were not there 
so this again, I'm hugging air! 
  
Finally,  my brain gives up and sleeps 
but still you find me in my dreams 
but in my dreams your there with me 
so this is now the place to be. 
  
its time to wake up, I feel exhausted 
my brain feels fried, there was no off switch.  
All throughout the night, you and I danced away 
under the moonlight, with the stars on display 
upon cloud tops,  high in the sky 
where angels sit to watch you and I 
  
Sorrow was what it took, for me to realise 
what love was, and how it thrives 
where it starts, how it feels 
how it hurts,  but how it thrills.. 
  
I feel like I could fly, this stuff is better than Red Bull 
I've never been so high, the feeling is astronomical 
and to think the reason why,  I feel so invincible 
Is because I looked into your eyes 
and was touched by your soul.. 

  
I leave it to fate, to decide what will be, 
to see if theres a future for you and me. 
You are one of a kind, you are my friend.  
I've never met anyone like you.. 
I dont think I will again!


Long poem by kasim ishmael | Details |

Grandfather chair

I never knew my mother father
He died when she was about five years old
He was quite an adventurous man
So there was a lot about him to be told

He was an Indian soldier in the British army
During the world war one campaign
He Came to Trinidad from India
And never return to India again

I don’t know how he met my grandmother
Or how their romance did began
Because my grandmother was born handicap
With Deformed feet and hand

But it must have been love at first sight
That moment must have been really great
I wish I had ask her about that moment
But I never think about it till it’s too late

I don’t even know the date or year
But they got married a little while after
She must have been really beautiful
And he must have really love her

They had one child which is my “my mother
Then my grand father died when she was five
He was taking her to India to see his family
But Got sick and he didn’t survive

I remember my mother telling stories
That her father use to tell to her
About all the places he has been to
And bout his time in the war

And about one time he and other solders
Was tired in the forest and took a brake
Think they sat down on a log of a tree
But it really a big fat snake

She taught her a lot at a very early age
He taught her how to build camp fires
And he use lift her on his shoulders
he gave her a lot hopes and desire’s

she told how he build her a chair
And he listens to her every dream
How she would spend all his time with her
And made her home made ice cream

And how he has so many stories
He use to tell to her every day
He would about his family in India
And he never ran out of things to say.

And thought he died when she was five
She remembers every thing about him
Some thing that she will never forget
She carries with her forever within

My mother says I look like her father
And sometimes she looks at me and sees him
My grand father was about six feet tall
With muscles, very handsome and slim

And though my grandmother was handicap
She just captured his heart completely
This proves when the magic of love comes
True love knows no boundary

Now they are just apart of our history
And their story was of a time before
I’m writing from recollections’ of my memory
I wish I could of remember and write a lot more


Long poem by Joe Flach | Details |

Baseball in Heaven

My grandfather and I had a special relationship.

When I was young we lived near his home in Baltimore.  But, my family moved away from 
Baltimore when I was five and we lived most of my life in another state far away from my 
grandfather.  Whenever he called, however, I was the one grandchild he always wanted to 
talk to so we could discuss his beloved Baltimore Orioles.  I was the one grandchild who 
followed sports closely and always remained a true Baltimore sports fan.

Later in life, I learned that my grandfather was actually a gifted baseball player himself when 
he was young.  In those days, he would explain, professional baseball players did not make 
enough money to support a family so he had to make up his mind to either play baseball or 
get married and raise a family.  As it turned out, his love for baseball was only surpassed by 
his love for my grandmother and, although he hung on to the newspaper clippings that 
labeled him a “can’t miss professional baseball prospect”, he hung up his cleats and glove, 
married my grandmother and went out to find a “real” job.

But his love for the game survived and year in and year out, he and I discussed the 
intricacies of the game and enjoyed or lamented each baseball season based on the 
successes and/or failures of the Baltimore Orioles.  As crummy as the Baltimore bums are 
today, I was fortunate enough to experience and share many more successful seasons than 
poor ones during those limited years that I shared life with this amazing man.

I always felt sorry for my grandfather, considering him a victim of poor timing.  Had he 
been born about 50 years later in life, he would not have had to pick between being a 
baseball player or earning a living – in fact, with his talent, he could have earned a much 
better than average living while enjoying the one thing he loved most in life.

When my grandfather passed away, I was sure that he was joining a heavenly nine to once 
again strap on his spikes and don the leather.  Without a doubt, they must play baseball in 
heaven.  And I wait for the day that I sit in the heavenly bleachers and cheer on a young 
grandfather playing this wonderful game with other boys of summer.

(Inspired by, “is there baseball in heaven”, by Constance, A Rambling Poet)


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