Worn ivory keys that once glistened brightly,
Straps of leather cracked and broken.
The dulled rhinestones that adorn your panel,
Spell out the name LUISA.
You bear the nicks and scratches of time,
The sign of many years passing.
For a brief moment you were a star,
Circuiting the stages of Vaudeville.
You were cradled in Luisa’s arms daily,
Emitting sweet melodies for captive audiences.
Two generations later,
You are no longer held in loving arms.
Now you sit atop the credenza in my foyer,
Remembering your days of glory.
All who enter take notice and marvel at you,
They ask me questions about your life.
And I tell them about you and Luisa.
I tell them that the two of you were inseparable.
I speak of the excitement you both shared,
How from the brightly lit stages,
You lovingly gazed into the eyes of delighted audiences.
Although you may feel very tired and old,
And perhaps neglected at times,
In their mind’s eye they catch a glimpse of who you used to be.
They imagine a time in history, moments that are almost forgotten.
For beneath your rough, worn out exterior,
They are able to see what you no longer see,
What you no longer think exists within you,
For they see an exquisite instrument of beauty and joy.
Written in honor of a beautiful, talented and strong Italian woman… mia nonna Luisa.
Also written in response to Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Broken
Not sure why – but as children we just called our ‘Nona’s’ – ‘Gramma’ – They never did talk much Italian to us. And pretty much nothing about their past. And we think we have it hard today? Two and three generations ago coming to a new country leaving most of your other relatives behind. Starting fresh, but with old school ideals. One can only hope they were able to find some of the freedoms they were looking for. Like the hand cranked washing machine. Or retiring to Florida.
Lovely images. I only have some photos, but nothing of their childhoods. Only of their presence once ‘here’ and now those memories are ‘long ago and far away’.
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