At a counter in a crowded kitchen
decorated with roosters and hens
we sat on stools drinking black coffee
in mismatched cups and chipped mugs.
He showed me his gun cabinet, his prized
Winchester, the gun that won the West.
I knew you’d come one day, he said as he
pulled my kindergarten photo from his wallet.
She mixed the flour with shortening and
used a jelly jar to perfectly cut out biscuits.
I told your Dad that when you got two babies
you have to stay, but he just couldn’t do it.
Sharing memories of the times back in Jersey
turned to a conversation of misunderstandings
and regrets but when I went to leave they said
what they always said to us all, Stay with us.