When my grandmother passed away,
I acquired a piece of her jewelry
as a memento.
Nothing had been required,
she was unforgettable.

Never the type for fancy things,
A few familiar dresses, lipstick only,
she held your wrist as she spoke,
capturing your attention.
Her love of family was sweet,
like the notes she played on the piano.

I don’t recall ever seeing the oval cameo shell,
worn as a brooch or pendant,
framed by a lacy gold octagon border.
Delicate profile of a porcelain woman, hair flowing,
silver braided necklace with a diamond.
A rose in bloom carved on her shoulder, and
Her name was Rose.

Was it a gift from my grandfather?
Or handed down by her mother?
Perhaps a favorite keepsake she’d had for years?
Touching and turning in my hands,
thumbs skimming the texture,
studying rise and fall of shape,
Searching in vain for a hidden story.