by Edmund Siejka
A sense of guilt
Made him search the hall closet
Until he found the old cardboard box.
At a handful of dusty photos.
He remembered Aunt Jenny,
Who told funny stories,
How families in Europe
Lived near borders and one could have a German last name
And be French or even Czech.
Or how uncle Tomas
Made his way to York, PA.
Thinking it was New York
When told that it wasn’t
He shrugged his shoulders
Saying York, PA was okie dokie by him.
Or cousin Laurence who worked in a coal mine
Until he couldn’t take it anymore
And ran away to a dairy farm in New Jersey.
Putting the faded photos back into the carboard box
He wondered if his granddaughter really wanted
To research their family tree
Like she promised.
When the realization came to him
That most of the photos had been thrown away
Back when his father said
No one wanted to remember the old days.
Pushing aside coats and jackets
He carefully returned the box back to the hall closet
Regretting that he never kept the old photos and papers.
He wondered if anyone even cared
That the old days had been mindlessly tossed away.
Copyright © Edmund Siejka | Year Posted 2019