ode to joy: grandpa's little girl becomes the elfin bride
Grandfather's Little Ballerina (c) Norman Rockwell
i was my grandfather's little girl. we were kindred spirits and i felt it from the moment i could even learn how to walk.
when he was in his workshop, i'd hand him his screwdriver (the only tool i knew); when he turned on the stereo he just fixed, i'd tap my feet and dance; when he played solitaire, i would be watching; when he was engrossed with work, i was a chatterbox... i was here, there, and everywhere like some sort of a guardian angel. the beauty of it is that, i never outgrew the things we were both so fond of -- my grandfather loved earle stanley gardner books, remington typewriters, homemade phonographs, vintage cars, all cameras, the 1948 deutsche bundespost phone, and my grandmother... he was so in-love with her. i often wished that when i grew up, a guy like my grandfather would come into my life and sweep me off my feet.
he loved teasing me with boys, and oh did i enjoy it! he would jokingly tell his friends that he would require a dowry from my "future husband" before giving me away... i'm in-love with someone and i'm pretty sure he loves me too, i know my grandfather approves... but like the first elfin bride, i have to go through momentary uncertainties ('the elfin bride' dates back to late mediæval times; i knew the modern lyrical interpretation, but the old verses i came upon by accident. in the ballad, "the writer goes on to assign his true love impossible tasks, to try and explain to her that love sometimes requires doing things which seem downright impossible on the face of it. he is asking his love to do the impossible, and then come back to him and ask for his hand. this is a highly unusual suggestion, because in those days it was a grave faux-pas to people from all walks of life for a lady to ask for a man's hand. yet it fits in well with the rest of the lyrics, as nothing seems to be impossible in the song...").
my grandfather who loved music, would be playing 'the desert song' for me now; my grandfather, who was organised and responsible and always concerned about my future and my health, would have told me the dowry was paid... here is someone who will walk with me all the days of my life.
Pages of the Past (c) Maureen Love
The glory of young men is their strength, gray hair the splendor of the old.
-- Proverbs 20:29
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