Although we were four generations of German Americans in the Thatford Avenue house, our mother- tongue faded with each new child speaking more American English than Deutsch. The only German I heard was from Grandma Rose's friends who sat on kitchen chairs brought down to the front porch. There, shaded from the damp July heat, they shucked corn, peeled carrots or shelled summer peas without missing a bit of gossip. My job was to gather the empty pea pods from the big wooden bowl onto a sheet of newspaper.Read More
One More Thing Before I Go
Last spring when the scent of lilacs followed me from the backyard into my kitchen, I thought of my mother’s distant cousin and her daughters, who, like my lilacs, visited yearly when the earth warmed and the days grew longer. I pictured us all in idyllic memories of jump rope games and playing with dolls. But, except for MaryAnn, the littlest daughter, I could not remember their names.
A few years ago, I could have called my mother. She would have teased me for my forgetfulness, asked what I was making for dinner (there was never a phone conversation where we didn’t talk about food) and repeated her mother-to-daughter mantra, “When are you coming over?” We would have shared stories of those long-ago days before hanging-up and re-joining our lives. But my mother has passed on and while the images of our family lingers-the details are lost. I write One more thing before I go, my living record for my son, in hope that one day, when he has a question I can no longer answer, it can be found in this blog.