Middle Island Press

publishing services for the love of all things literary

   Apr 15

–roots and branches

Stephen Godfrey chapbook

roots and branches: savings options

roots and branches (2012)

by Stephen Godfrey

This 25-poem collection is a nostalgic medley of sepia memories made vivid through Godfrey’s warm and enthusiastic recollections of “Gramma and Grampa,” out-houses in winter, battles with wasps, “Red Man” and all things country and true to the spirit. Thirty-eight pages.

(A browse upon Pages 32 and 34):

From “Noonday Chiggers”


on the return trip, dined
on my arms. the aroma of
a young sapling stirred their
carnivorous instincts to further
ravage me; torture me; itch
me plum near death.


the price has been paid for
sunshine and fresh air; chigger
bumps everywhere.
the audacity of it all!

“I Remember the Old Ways”

I remember long ago in my childhood, in West Virginia,
Simple ways; the old ways of the mountain people.
A vivid impression of taking a bath in a rain-tub
With hot water heated on a Wood Cooking Stove.

I remember ventures to the Out-House in mid-winter,
With the infamous Sears Catalog.
You could read it and use it at the same time,
While contemplating the deeper things of life.

I remember my Grampa and Uncles
Sitting on the front porch in rocking chairs with “Red Man,”
Rocking and spitting with pin-point accuracy
For hours; talking about whatever pleased.

I remember the family around the Piano
For hours singing beloved Hymns.
The faces were all aglow and beaming.
It was a time of happiness and completeness.

Those days are gone, except in the mind’s eye.
The memories linger of a different time and place.


(roots and branches is also available through Amazon.com.)

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