Monday, February 10, 2014

Amanuensis Monday - Grandma Hill's Poetry, week 23

To the Ormsbys, Victor, Myrtle and little George Ed.
You ask if I still write verse, 'tis enough said.
The winter's been so cold and we've had so much snow.
I seldom take my pen in hand any mo'.
I changed my furnace to oil and quit the dirty coal.
So I nearly froze to death in this drafty old hole.
The oil burned so fast, my money seemed to fly away.
Just count it yourself, I used 10 or 11 gallons a day.
As each gallon burned away, went thirteen and a half cents.
And besides that my gas bills come in dollars, and not pence.
But enough grumbling, we've all got along just swell.
And I'm glad we're all coming through, happy, saucy and well.
With my house, my roomers and my boarders, my days are quite full.
Days when I'm lazy, it seems to be a long, hard pull.
But I just keep moving and doing here a little bit and there a little bit.
And finally get it done in good time, then I quit.
The snows came and the ice froze up so hard
that since Xmas I've not been out of the yard.
On Sat. Don gets my groceries and meat to last all week.
My milk's delivered and Don goes to the store, the bread to seek.
Evenings I listen to the radio and I sit and crochet.
If I get blue, I play "Sol" to drive my troubles away.
I don't seem to care for shows, skating, dancing, not even men
So when I get ready for bed, I don't have to ask anyone where or when.
I hope this finds you all just spinning along at top speed
With plenty of everything, and doing each day some useful deed.
You say May is getting better, but recovery seems slow.
We all hope that very soon she'll be up, busy, happy and on the go.
Jessie and Don told me much about little George Ed
Just kiss him for me on his little red curly head.
Victor and Myrtle just give a big kiss to each other
And play like that it came from your gray haired grandmother.


Note: This poem refers to Grandma Hill's daughter Jessie Hill Ormsby Kern (1895-1963), her sons Donald and Charles Victor Ormsby.  Charles Victor was always called Vic or Victor - his wife was Myrtle and their oldest son was George Edward.  Jessie and Don lived near her in Toledo, OH.  Vic and his family lived near Casey, IL.  Also mentioned is Lelia Mae Ormsby Baker ("May") who was Jessie's first husband's sister.  This was written sometime between 1945 when George was born, and 1954 when Mae died.  Most likely it was written before 1949 when Vic and Myrtle had their second son Charles, since he is not mentioned.

Grandma Hill used to rent rooms in her house to boarders.

Note the price of heating oil - 13-1/2 cents per gallon! 

Nancy Jane Wiley Hill (1875-1960) was always writing something.  Many of those poems are now in the possession of her granddaughter Shirley Kern.  Shirley, with the help of her sister-in-law Ruth Ormsby, transcribed these poems in 1996 for a Hill-Ormsby-Kern family reunion.  I am going to post many of these poems so that they may be enjoyed by all.

These are copyright 1996 and reprinted with permission.

No comments:

Post a Comment