My Father's Father

by Drora Matlofsky

Mum gave me a picture
of my father's father.
(Her Alzheimer-clouded mind
doesn't like photos,
because she seldom recognises
the faces looking up at her.)

'I don't know what to do with it,'
she says.

A foty-year old man
dressed as in the thirties
sitting on a low wall
looks far away
at something I cannot see
and smiles.

He died before I was born.
I know little of him.

I put the picture away
with other family photos.

Papa's French father now sits alone
among Mum's English relatives
he never met
and whose language he didn't speak.
How ironic they should end up
in the same box.

Drora Matlofsky has been living in Jerusalem since 1984. Her poetry in English has appeared in various poetry and Jewish magazines and her poetry in French can be found on the Poésie Française site.

Last updated December 19, 2015