The white bead rests between my two fingers
Identical to all of the others, save
For the red roses after each decade
I'm supposed to be thinking of Jesus
The crown of thorns around his head, piercing
His skin until the blood clouded his eyes
But it's my great-grandmother who keeps coming back
Marie-Anne, who spoke only French, and
Would lead a rosary circle for the farmhands after dinner
Her husband went six years before her
She would sit around after that, wondering
"When will Napoleon come and get me?"
I only have one memory of her
We were sitting alone on the front porch, the
Dirt circle driveway in front of us
I was playing with my Memere's toys
Some colorful magnet game; she
Was knitting in a rocking chair, not saying a word
Sometimes I like to imagine I am my great-grandmother,
As my tongue finishes the "Hail Mary" and my fingers move on.
It makes me feel a little more confident about what I hold in my hands.