Growing up can be confusing. Our mothers the bulwarks of our beings guide and love us. Our fathers love us too but often the responsibility of work, family finances and survival of our family unit takes them away from the home.
Writing Schicksal, I found myself in a place of deep divide. From my mother I had only ever received one perspective of my maternal grandfather.
Unfortunately this perspective was harsh, fueled by the anger of desertion; a child hurt and trapped in a past where forgiveness eluded her.
For months I struggled with my perceptions of him. What I knew failed to match what life had so far shown me. I held the pen and with it felt tremendous responsibility.
His blood flowed through me. How would I portray his character?
So I struggled with conscience and illuminated my ignorance with research. Gradually finding a place of reconciliation, a place to love a man who set into motion a chain of events that continue to ripple forth.
This is for you Opa. I love you.
Almost brittle you stand there.
The photo is old but not you.
In your eyes, ferocity burns.
Your world is cold, dark and noisy.
Inside the earth,
You become one with the coal.
Inside and outside touched with the black dust.
Your wife became the light.
Shining her love into the dark places,
Life took her back.
The blackness remodeled the man into a shadow.
Disoriented in the darkness of your pain,
You wandered alone through the tunnels.
Voices called but your ears had grown weary.
Child-eyes feared the man lost.