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Dreaming My Grandfather’s Dreams

Glen Sorestad


My grandfather slept in this farmhouse
as a child. Here, this night,
grandfather many times over,
I lie in this same first home
of the grandfather I never knew,
who died before I came to know
a father could have a father.
In mountain darkness I listen
to the silence of the house,
first room hammered square
two and a half centuries past,
beams hand-hewn, timber
from steep slopes eavesdropping now,
the house expanded by generations
coming down the centuries
like logs from the mountainside,
farm name and family name the same.

In the house of my father’s father,
where this mountain stillness
tucked round him like a quilt,
I drift off to sleep,
dream ancestral dreams –
cold dreams of stone fences,
warm dreams of evening lamps
and dinner table din;
gentle dreams of cows,
neck bells clinking them
home for milking time,
     plashy dreams of silvery salmon
     finning the Suldal River
     from the sea to spawn
     (I imagine I hear the water
     move through the dark).

In the house of his childhood
I dream my grandfather’s dreams
and I am a child as well.
An ocean removed from home
in a country I had never seen,
wrapped in the comforter
of my history, I dream
my grandfather’s dreams.



Glen Sorestad's works copyright © to the author.


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