An Old Gold Ring

an old gold ring

An Old Gold Ring


Going through the glitter tat

that we’ve gathered over years

of buying this and that,

shiny shit and twinkly bits

of jewellery, some good, some crap

and bought for no better reason

than because we could, I found

an old gold ring.

A heavy thing, it belonged

to my grandfather, long dead,

and not well remembered,

to my shame,

though he was not well loved

by my mother,

his step-daughter;

which ought to,

perhaps, explain.

I don’t know much about my

real grandfather,

the bloodfather, if you will.

I don’t know anything

about his parents,

or any great-grandparents,

the far distant

beginnings of my family,

who they were or what they did.

I don’t know if I want to know.

What would I take from someone

a hundred years dead?

What could I give to them?

And how far back

does a family begin, anyway?

I think it begins

with those we have kissed.

My grandfather had their initials

cut into the ring,

him and his wife,

my grandparents,

P & W B.

That is what

they were,

the initials,

the beginning

of my family.

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