“Seaglass” appeared in Mystic River Review in 2003.
I have only two photographs of my maternal grandmother, one black-and-white, taken shortly before my second birthday, the other taken four or five years later, in color. When the black-and-white picture was taken, she and I were sitting on the beach at Hannaford Cove. It was the end of summer, and I wore overalls and a hooded sweatshirt. The hood had fallen back as I faced the camera, holding up a small plastic pail. My smile was joyful; the pail must have held something beautiful: periwinkle shells, or bits of sea glass, perhaps a few smooth stones or a crab claw. My grandmother was turned away from me, facing the sea, most of her face hidden by the hat which protected her skin from the sun.