Grandfather’s ring
by Jesse Holth

made by his hands,
tarnished by age
and by air

smooth inner side,
outer pocked steel
the craters feel
full, not empty
it’s the life
inside, breathing

too wide to see
little knuckles
beneath, and
much too large
for tiny fingers

must hang from
dangling chain to
wear, around such
a small head
as talisman to
call forth: love,
patience, empathy,

a treasure beyond
measure, fashioned
from an unliving
generation —
passed down, created
through family to span
an eternity of ages

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: My grandfather’s ring, today.

NOT FROM THE AUTHOR: My grandfather made at least two handcrafted rings — one was given to my grandmother, which she still wears every day, and the other to my mother (who handed it down to me). Since his passing, the ring has become a symbol of his generous, selfless spirit and the patience and kindness that he imparted to me.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jesse Holth is a freelance writer and editor. Her poetry will be featured in a forthcoming gallery exhibition, and her writing has been featured in The Huffington Post, Popular Archaeology, and Seaside Magazine. You can find her at jesseholth.com or on Twitter @jesseholth.