My grandmother loved to give her money to charity
The unemployed sitting in the diner
The sisters from the church
The starving overseas
And then my brother who, daily, needed "a couple bucks for gas"
So he could drive the 20 or so blocks to his favorite bar.
My mother said she was, "trying to buy her way into heaven".
The rest of her mad money would go to buy flower seeds and bulbs
And I, who wouldn't take a dollar from her without earning it,
Planted these each year
From April through September
When I moved across the country
I called her that first February to tell her
That the camellias and the daffodils and the crocuses
Were in full bloom out here already
"Boyyyyy aren't you lucky!" she said
"We'll have to wait and see if anything blooms at all here this spring."
Her tone made it seem as if that might actually be in doubt
And I, basking in the glory of my early season, suddenly realized
It was never about giving anything to charity
Or buying a ticket into heaven
Or disappearing gas
It was simply, for her
A matter of hope
~nicolas hall 2012