Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Photo courtesy of dreamstimefree_245756     
     Childhood, family, friends, first love, someone disliked--perhaps hated. They all stick in a writer's memory waiting until they can be placed on a page. Transformed--usually--until they're unrecognizable.
     My first short story was about family--though I didn't realize it at first. It took place in my apartment and was about remembering happenings with parents, aunts and uncles while waiting to travel to a service for my grandmother.
     My grandparents escaped a pogram in Russia and came to America. The story of their escape depended on who in the family was telling the tale. I liked my mother's story best--she tended to embroider and I hung on every word. They lived--first on the lower east side of New York and then in Bristol, Rhode Island where my grandfather worked in a shoe factory. My mom told me stories about jumping over puddles, being chased by a bull because she was wearing a red dress and ending up in the Old Soldiers Home. One of my favorite stories was about Christmas and the landlord who rented them the house they lived in. the landlord came by making my grandfather very nervous. Grandpa thought he would evict them because he and grandma had seven children; instead he presented my grandfather with seven pullets--one for each child.
     I adored my aunts--Claire was modern and read the latest magazines. Molly, the youngest, I asked for advice on dating. Betty--the do-gooder in the family--belonged to charitable organizations and Gus was the intellectual who took me to see Japanese films. The uncles all had a sense of humor and gatherings were filled with jokes and puns. I have a lot of material to draw about you?


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