Born American, sixth generation of great-grands all German,
not much liking sausage or sauerkraut, English speaking all the way,
except the Germany of my ancestry was fought over and broken
so I’m a bit of France, Germany, Poland, Hungary all the Holy
Roman empire, dissolved down, fought over, egotized, horrified
and remade Into some new state where English is as common as German.
We share a love of flowers in the face of cold and rain, I drink less beer
and wine, meet up somewhere, anywhere around the world on a beach.
From my parents and grandparents, I know to serve up too much food
seven sweets, seven sours and drink and whirl the night away to a band.
Hardworking sorts, unafraid of a little dirt, loving dirt, the turnover
and young sprout brought to fruit, wearing overalls and then washing up.
To sit before a pressed linen table cloth, served up on the finest china,
the cha in my father’s name, the uff da, and other exclamations.
The morning rosaries, the blessed churches where we give thanks for all good
and the setting aside of pride while we work together to make our food.
Sure there are aprons for cooking. Shorts for summertime. A dive into any pool.
What do I know of being German, not much, it's just somewhere in my roots.