Namesake

Three stories in three poems all based off the Jewish family members I'm named after. My name is Sima Rose Greenfield.

Part 1

Sima lived in Poland, when the Holocaust began,

She heard rumors of Jews being taken from their homes

Of Jews never being heard from again,

Of Jews taken to ghettos then taken to nowhere,

Of Jews hiding in walls,

Then she heard Jews, who were in the woods

They emerged from the forest to fight and die

They emerged to bomb rail road track

They emerged to get food to cramped ghettos

They emerged to kill Nazis

They emerged to take Jews from walls to freedom

They emerged to resist intolerant hands of tyranny

Sima went to the woods with a gun and a glimmer of hope

Because humans deserve better than dying emaciated in a cloud of blue smoke

Part 2

Rose’s family was ripped apart by the Russians.

Their mansion had a mezuzah- that was a crime.

Her and her daughters were banished to Siberia.

Her husband and son were sent to work to death in Poland.

Rose would not accept that.

Her daughters and she got to Poland.

She bought vodka and wore a short dress.

She was home in the reflection on the glass.

The guards couldn’t say no to beautiful women supplying them booze.

And while the guards drank away their boredom.

A daughter snuck her brother and father past wasted guards.

The family reunited with their tears reflecting moonlit in the forest.

They found a way from Poland’s woods to and an Austrian refugee camp,

From an Austrian refugee camp to the warm embraces of cousins in Danville, IL.

They ran a liquor store. 

All the luxuries they had meant nothing compared to eating Shabbat dinner together.

 Part 3

Mikael Grunsfeld came to America from Czechoslovakia

After World War One, pogroms

Seemed to get popular.

So the Grunsfelds decided they didn’t want to wait

Until they were hunted down and murdered.

They sold everything they could to get boat tickets.

Mikael passed Lady Liberty

He was of the huddle masses she lifted her lamp for

He saw hope glowing in her lantern.

He docked in Ellis Island.

He wanted to be an American.

The papers told him he was now Michael Greenfield.

The End

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