Look How They Shine for You

cherry shrub by Akuokuo Vallis.jpg


Every time I make this shrub — especially cherry shrub — I think about my great, great grandfather — on my mother’s side — grandpa Frank.

I bet it was a night like this  — around midnight — when grandpa Frank ran away.  Looking  up at that moon — so huge and so full — it was probably, nearly, almost close enough to touch — if he reached for it — if he stretched — a little.  And with all those stars so bright and so big — I know it was easier to see — just had to be.

Maybe he planned it that way — maybe he didn’t — don’t know for sure — but either way — my great, great, great grandfather Ambrose owned a lot of slaves — fathered quite a few — including grandpa Frank.  It was a crazy, tangled business — that Kentucky plantation.

Eventually —  grandpa Frank went back to that same plantation — back to his father, Ambrose — who then hired  him to run the plantation.  Grandpa Frank was always good with money.  He could read and write.  His father taught him — early.

Grandpa Frank was in charge of the slaves — on the plantation.  He even bought some of the slaves — for his father — for the plantation.  It was a crazy, tangled business — but grandpa Frank knew it well.  He married one of the slaves — on the plantation.  She was my great, great grandma Lucinda.


Frank and Lucinda by Akuokuo Vallis


She liked strawberries.  He liked cherries.

Bet they were married on a night like this — around midnight — somewhere — on that Kentucky plantation — moon so bright — stars so big — it was probably even easier to see.