Nebraska Center for Writers


Before she died
Grandmother sewed
a patchwork quilt
from scraps left over--
this one from a jumper she made for me
the summer I broke my arm
and couldn't get the cast through shirt sleeves.
She tied it all with different colored strings
love tied in every knot.
Even now I wrap up in the quilt
and feel her love surround me
from beyond the grave

Each year before she dies
Grandmother Earth
creates a patchwork quilt.
The trees turn red and golden satin
on the harlequined hills,
and the milo fields
are rusted corduroy.
Strings of blackbirds
tie a knot across
the seam-edged roads,
and even though
the breeze is cooler now
and often from the north,
I feel a comfort
that will last throughout
the grave of winter.

Reprinted with permission
Copyright © 1996
by Tamora Whitney

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The Rock

Nebraska Center for Writers