Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Thursday May 29

I had hoped to go there
and see my beloved
people on the other side,
But the World War, and
my bad luck kept me
from it.

It is now my sole aim
to keep my dear mother
comfortable for the rest of her


I've wondered before if Papa's father's death would "spoil" the idea of visiting home for him, and the resigned tone of this entry makes me think that might be the case. Without his father to anchor the image of his "beloved people on the other side," his thoughts of home cannot sustain him as they once did.

It's unusual for Papa to hold outside influences responsible for the course of his life, so I think we can see how profound and jarring it is for him to be stripped of the prospect of a family reunion in Sniatyn -- only a global upheaval like a World War or an unseen force like "bad luck" could be responsible. I think this notion may actually help him feel less guilty about not making it back and not being able to do more for his family, though such resignation doesn't suit him; perhaps his vow to take care of his mother is a way for him to withdraw from his foray into helplessness.

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