Saturday, December 5, 2009
Great-grandma Manya, Benny's wife.
She stayed behind in their Russian village for several years, while Benny made his way in the new world. When he was settled, he sent for her (and how I wish I had a copy of that letter!), and Manya sailed to Ellis Island, her children in tow. She took little else from the old country save the gleaming brass samovar, carefully wrapped in woolens, destined to join a little army of its brethren all over Brooklyn; the ubiquitous bequest found even today in the modern houses of many families of Russian Jewish descent. At this very moment it sits, gleaming still, in the hallway outside my bedroom, though the black tea leaves have long since evanesced.
My mom remembers her Grandma as a lovely, lovey woman. And when I asked my mother's cousin, she said, succinctly, "there is a memory of a bosom."
I think of Manya squeezing her grandchildren close, pressing them into the flowered decolletee, the powdery scent enveloping.
take a look at some other Sepia Saturday posts HERE!