Birthday Book

To Amy … from Grandma … 1895

When Amy turned seven in 1895
Grandma gave her a birthday book
for her beautiful copperplate writing.
Earnestly Amy inscribed birth dates
of her parents, grandparents, siblings,
in the approved handwriting style.
In time the writing became slimmer,
smaller, as a busy housewife and mother
scrawled hastily across the pages.

Now dates of marriages were
entered, births of children, deaths
of parents, of her own generation
flowing across the pages.

But not her grief at the loss of
beloved sisters, her sadness at the
second marriage of her divorced
youngest brother whom she was
not allowed to mention though he
was awarded a military cross
after the Battle of Paschendaele.

She did not record the death of
the husband who only wanted a
housekeeper while she yearned for
a lively family home. Nor his second
funeral pyre on which she burned
all the photos from his expensive
cameras, from his own dark room.

She recorded her removal
with her daughter to a
newer smaller home.

Previously posted November 2016.

Birthday Book