ancestral disconnect

[warning: this post is *prose* without capitalization. it happened very early this morning.]

tragic, isn’t it? how far we are from where we started.  water from a tap has forgotten the river god’s name.  immigration, flight without the household gods. arrive somewhere strange and you are vulnerable. grasping at someone else’s threads, trying to weave a new cloth from scraps.  i have the name of an island and a poet.  no wonder i’ve been drifting for years.

hearing an old poem makes me want to return to my homeland.  see the ground my great grandparents left.  took with them, only tiny pieces.  Italy, Italia, i miss you in my bones. en mie osse.  Ireland, northern England: you are my other mothers, my first name.  so much time has passed, so many words and faces have rubbed away.  will i ever touch  my ancestors’ haunting grounds?


About emvlovely

Oh, I live in an RV. I write poems, essays and prose. Thanks for reading my blog, good health to you!
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One Response to ancestral disconnect

  1. Joanie Virgil says:

    I confess, despite giving you an Irish name, there is no Irish blood on either side of the family. Dad and I just loved the name!

    Good topic, ancestors. I can understand your connection to Dad’s Italian ancestry, a strong but also inexplicable bond with a place you’ve never set foot on (yet), the birthplace of four of your great-grandparents. Unlike the Pinkham/Carlisle ancestors, who were early colonists, the Italian relatives came here much more recently and actually spent their childhood years in Italy. Despite the differences in time and place, I can’t help wondering if your English/Scottish relatives came here for similar reasons – the promise of a better life, and maybe in search of a little adventure. Of course, there is the historical fact that the Carlisles had the “noble” task of expanding the King’s empire – I’m afraid the Carlisles were Tories, and retreated to Nova Scotia during the Revolution (although there were some patriots, too, I’m told)!

    A final comment about long-ago and far-away ancestors. I had the strangest feeling when I visited England for the first time – it seemed like “home” to me, like I belonged there. Although I liked Italy, too, it was for different reasons (the long history, beautiful artwork and architecture, old cities, friendly people, and much more). But unlike England, Italy didn’t seem at all familiar to me, just a beautiful country to visit. I guess I’ve been drifting for years, too!

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