The Haunting

Donna Sewell


I follow the path behind Grandmother's house,

walking beside fields,

smelling freshly plowed dirt.


Memories haunt these woods:††††††††††††††

riding the tractor with Dad,††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

learning to drive motorcycles,

sunbathing with my sister and friends,

planting pine trees with my father and brother.


Once my grandmother's land,

it now belongs to my dad,

but feels a part of me.


I pause beside the tree stand,

chuckling as I remember being stuck

with my boyfriend laughing below me.

Smoke wafts past me,

twitching my nose,

a trash pile burning behind me

under Dadís watchful eye.


Stories haunt these woods:

stories of Dad and his cousin roaming the woods,

riding their horse,

playing golf on Uncle Juliusís homemade course.


Other stories compete:

my grandfatherís fatal hunting accident

(rarely told),

the teenager who murdered his girlfriend,

then killed himself

(often told).


I shiver,

fretting about the bad ghosts.

Then I smile,

counting on Granddadís protection,

my own guardian angel

tied to the land he farmed and hunted,

the land where he lived and died.