Every memory of him I possess 
is dressed in a button-down,
leather shoes, and old-man slacks 
worn belted high, prone
to ride up whenever he bends
at the waist to sit in his armchair.

Sometimes, above his socks, I catch
a glimpse of grandpa’s legs,
shiny as his balding head, 
stick-thin shins scarred red, 
mom says, from years of steely scrapes
tattooed by creamery cans.

He was a farmer back then,
but I’m too young to imagine what I see 
is not what’s always been. How strange 
the thought of him, now soft with age spots, 
once hefting hunks of milk-filled metal, 
clad not in slacks, but in boots and denim.