Playground at Grandma's Place

She's been cleaning her apartment for two weeks—
Her granddaughters are coming for Christmas.
She moves furniture against the walls to make
more living room space for them to roam and play.
She's got back spasms from all this cleaning
and asks me to help lifting boxes from her
closet with toys her boys used to play with—
Two jigsaw puzzles only ten pieces each,
simple enough for girls, five and three years old;
two stuffed animals for them to squeeze and hug,
a teddy bear that sings Christmas Carols
and a giant parrot dressed as "Olympic Sam".

She has a tiny table with crayons and
coloring sheets if they wish to draw,
also wagons drawn by pair of horses
but one of the wagons is missing a horse.
When she shows me the plastic houseboat
and a sailboat, I tell her the girls would love
floating them in her bathtub. "No, they won't"
she says, "I'm putting these boats on a blue towel.
They'll have to use their imagination and
sail these boats in a fantasy lake or bay."

"Wonderful idea" I tell her. She has planned
all these activities, so the girls will have
lots of choices to play at grandma's house.
When they arrive on Christmas, her son asks
"Mom, where are those cowboys and Indians?"
She points to her closet. He lifts the box out
and spreads the plastic figures on the floor.
Grandma sees her son reliving, enjoying
his yesteryears playing with his childhood toys
now with his young daughters on Christmas Day.

        Peter Y. Chou
        Mountain View, 12-25-2006