Thursday, April 17, 2014

Bubbe Meisehs by Shayneh Maidelehs: An Anthology of Poetry by Jewish Grandaughters About Our Grandmothers - compiled by Leslea Newman

Love. Overwhelming, intense, sometimes complicated love. I don't know how there can be more love expressed in one volume of poems than in this one.

Something about Jewish women and their grandmas. The relationship is often extremely close, loving, nurturing, caring. Many of us had grandmas who babysat or were with us for long periods of our lives, if we were lucky. Some of us were also lucky enough to have grandmas who shielded us from sadness and bad times that our parents were experiencing. Somehow nothing ever seemed quite as bad when we were at grandma's house or apartment.

Many of us also were lucky enough to have grandmas who acted on their convictions and organized marches and picketed and chaired committees to stop landlords from evicting tenants who had lost their jobs. Many of us have our grandmas to thank for thinking globally and acting locally long before this was a popular slogan.

And many of those same grandmas made the best Jewish food this country and world will ever know. And they saved the best pieces for us.

Even if you aren't Jewish, you will probably find your grandma here. And you'll cry and smile along with the rest of us.

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