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.