William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

At the Armenian Home

Even after his stroke and up to his death on January 6, 1990, at the age of ninety-three, my father’s father never did forget who we were. Many at the Armenian Home in Fresno, where he chose to spend the last few years of his life, weren’t as fortunate. This short poem was inspired by our visits there, and by the vineyards we used to pass on the way. “At the Armenian Home” first appeared in Ararat Quarterly, a traditional print magazine watched over by kind, supportive editor, Leo Hamalian, who has since passed away. It is one of many very spare poems written twenty and more years ago.

At the Armenian Home

He remembers
his old muscat vineyard,
but not their names.

Their faces are familiar,
like sunflowers
on wide, crooked stems.

The blue sky
above his field
is warm and clear.

His grapes are sweet,
with seeds like
small, hard stones.

He asks them to stay,
so they can enjoy
the abundant fruit.

Collected Poems

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Categories: Collected Poems

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