My grandma never made it past 6th grade in school.
Not because she wasn’t smart enough.
Not because she didn’t like school.
It just wasn’t expected for girls back then.
Born in a time so different from now.
During the beginning of a century,
in a nation divided in half at the brink of war.
My grandma always told me how she felt so stupid.
Telling me she wished she got to learn the things that I often took for granted
Even though she can read and write Korean,
she can barely speak any words of English.
She struggled to learn to spell a few English words,
despite living in NY for over 30 years.
She tells me how lucky I am.
How smart I am.
I forget to tell her that her years of life,
bring an unattainable wisdom,
a beauty, a grace and a love overflowing
that only can come from a grandmother’s heart
She is 101 years old.
She is from a different time.
She is refined by the fires she has gone through.
She is full of courage and strength,
which I can only hope to have one day.