Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Aaron Poochigian: The Only Grandson

In Memoriam: Vaughn Bedros Poochigian, 1909—1996

From Midway over plains, divides, and basins
On smaller jets destined for shorter flights
I reached the Valley, where, at your last rites,
Three priests agreed: you had grown grapes for raisins
And never grumbled because family lines
Branch always into further mouths-to-feed.
(Old women in whispers talked about my seed.)
Soon we had sold the orchard, cleared the vines.

You died too early to have dubbed me “crazy”—
An honorific title in our tribe.
True to your memory, I have crossed the hazy
Land of the Lost Wine (the enchanted one)
And smuggled out this cutting as a bribe,
A scion for you, grandpa, if no son.

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