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background: weekend in jamaica

i was finishing up another year at princeton when my grandma died (that’s her on the day she saw snow for the first time).  she was loving, wise, god-fearing and had a good sense of humor.  we lived in different countries so i didn’t get to see her as much as i would’ve wanted, but to this day she is the closest person that i’ve lost.  her funeral was scheduled near the end of the semester and since i was already behind with some classwork, one of my deans recommended that i skip the services.  that wasn’t a real option for me though.  i left for kingston on a saturday, attended the funeral on the sunday, and was back in jersey on monday.  i started writing the poem on the way back to campus.

these days, i try to avoid writing overly personal poetry.  part of the reason is that i don’t want my poems to be some inside joke/cry that leaves my audience completely in the cold.  with this one, there are some details that you just had to be there to fully get and others where you had to be me.  however even if you don’t fall into either group, i think the poem gives you enough to make it a worthwhile read.  what do you think?

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