Did you watch the Nobel Prize ceremony in 2016 when Patti Smith sang “It’s a Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall” in honor of her friend Bob Dylan? If not, you need to watch it here. And if you are one of the three million people who have already watched this video, trust me, it’s worth another watch.
Why bring up this song in relation to our subject of mindful grandparenting? Especially since Smith stumbles at about 2:30 minutes into this performance?
To answer that question, we need the help of poet Norbert Krapf, whose book The Return of Sunshine: Poems By a Laureate for Ecstatic Grandparents was given to me by journalist, author, and spiritual retreat leader Judith Valente.
I enjoyed a lovely 45-minute conversation with Norbert, and I was able to both initiate the Zoom call, record it, and load it to YouTube, little accomplishments that make me feel good today.
If you don’t have 45 minutes to watch the whole conversation, I invite you to go to the 25-minute mark to listen to Norbert read his poem “Peyton, Patti, Bob, and the Nobel Prize in Literature.” Listen for what happens when two-year-old Peyton witnesses the song, the stumble, and the recovery after he enters his grandfather’s room.
This conversation delighted me, and I hope it might delight you as well. In it, you can see the joy of two old grandparents, seeking words strong enough to convey the passion they feel for gifts their grandchild(ren) give(s) to them and the renewal of their own capacity to feel, hear, and see the divinity around them always.