The Girl Eating Oysters Stewart Florsheim

Mother to Son

On Kristallnacht,
your grandfather had his bag packed
and was ready to go.
The Gestapo beat me up too
but back then, they left little girls
with their mothers.
          Hoppe hoppe Reiter
          Wenn er fällt dann schreit er

Mr. Woolf, the man down the street
who lost his leg defending W.W. I Germany,
never imagined he would be taken.
Der Dank des Vaterlands ist euch gewiß, they said.
          Fällt er in den Graben
          Fressen ihn die Raben

Six weeks after they took your grandfather,
I jumped up once at 2 AM. I knew
he was coming home. I ran outside,
down the street and there he was,
crying, crying, he cried for weeks.
          Fällt er in den Sumpf
          Da macht er einen Plumps

And then what happened?
I keep asking, pushing through
one dark velvet curtain after another.


April 2004 ContentsPDF2River